Dr. Mutter's Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine. Cristin O'Keefe Aptowicz.

Dr. Mutter's Marvels: A True Tale of Intrigue and Innovation at the Dawn of Modern Medicine

New York: Gotham Books, 2014.

First Edition. Hardcover. First edition, with full number line indicating first printing. 9 1/4" X 6 1/4". 369pp. Mild edgewear to unclipped dust jacket, with rubbing to corners. Bound in full textured brown paper over boards, with spine lettered in gilt. Mild edgewear to binding, with rubbing and bumping to head and tail of spine. Binding is firm and sound. Pages are clean and bright. A very presentable first printing of this mesmerizing, first-ever biography of the brilliant and eccentric physician and innovator who refolutionized surgery and founded America's finest museum of medical oddities, the famed and infamous Mutter Museum, home to over 20,000 anatomic specimens, paintings, plaster casts, and wax models.

Imagine undergoing an operation without anesthesia, performed by a surgeon who refuses to sterilize his tools—or even wash his hands. This was the world of medicine when Thomas Dent Mütter began his trailblazing career as a plastic surgeon in Philadelphia during the mid-nineteenth century.

Although he died at just forty-eight, Mütter was an audacious medical innovator who pioneered the use of ether as anesthesia, the sterilization of surgical tools, and a compassion-based vision for helping the severely deformed, which clashed spectacularly with the sentiments of his time. Brilliant, outspoken, and brazenly handsome, Mütter was flamboyant in every aspect of his life. He wore pink silk suits to perform surgery, added an umlaut to his last name just because he could, and amassed an immense collection of medical oddities that would later form the basis of Philadelphia’s renowned Mütter Museum.

Award-winning writer Cristin O’Keefe Aptowicz vividly chronicles how Mütter’s efforts helped establish Philadelphia as a global mecca for medical innovation—despite intense resistance from his numerous rivals. (Foremost among them: Charles D. Meigs, an influential obstetrician who loathed Mütter’s “overly modern” medical opinions.) In the narrative spirit of The Devil in the White City, Dr. Mütter’s Marvels interweaves an eye-opening portrait of nineteenth-century medicine with the riveting biography of a man once described as the “[P. T.] Barnum of the surgery room.” (publisher). Very good + / very good +. Item #7033
ISBN: 0922233241

Price: $25.00