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The Dread Of Polished Steel: The Patient

A talk on the patient hospital experience of the 18th & 19th Century

In 1811, Frances Burney (later Madame D’Arblay) underwent a mastectomy without anaesthetic, leaving an account of the “most tortuous pain” she suffered in her journals. Although there are few records from a patient perspective for the charity hospitals like St Thomas’ (patients were poor and usually uneducated), anecdotes of famous operations – including Burney, Samuel Pepys and Lord Nelson – can provide a picture of the patient experience in a time before modern medicine.


Museum Curatorial Staff | talks


Date and Time:

26 May 2007 at 2:00 pm


1 hour



Old Operating Theatre, Museum & Herb Garret
9a St Thomas' Street
020 7188 2679

More at Old Operating Theatre, Museum & Herb Garret...




Available from:

To reserve a space, call 020 7188 2679 or email curator@thegarret.org.uk

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