Monday, February 18, 2013

Surgical Tools, From Beginning to Now

The history of medical devices and surgical tools spans back much further than most in modern times give it credit for. In-fact, there is emerging, new evidence that shows that humans have been using tools to perform surgical operations since we were still cavemen. Though these tools were rough, and only polished throughout many centuries, these first tools inspired man and taught us that lives can be saved, and quality of life can be increased through the correct use of inanimate objects.

The original surgical tools were actually little more than rocks that peoples had found, and had a utilitarian shape. Sharp edges, tube-shapes, and blunt-edges all soon served their own medical purposes. As a matter of fact, the Mayans reportedly used conical rocks as drills, both for carpentry purposes, and as a drill to bore through skull and bone.  Around the 16th century, the first hypodermic needles began to take shape. The gargantuan needles were up to a centimeter in diameter, and destroyed more veins than they did save lives.

Coupling syringe technology with classical medical and surgical instrument designs, Karl Storz and other physicians interested in advancing medical equipment design, began toying with a new kind of medical equipment that they deemed "endoscopy equipment." The main aim of this equipment was to allow physicians to look inside the body by making tools more minute, so that they could be delivered into the body via a syringe-like tube. These inventions revolutionized the medical industry and showed us that innovative new technology can be dreamed up, that builds upon existing technology.

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