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Old Operating Theatre Museum & Herb Garret, London

Old Operating Theatre Museum & Herb Garret - London, United Kingdom
Old Operating Theatre Museum & Herb Garret
9A Saint Thomas Street, London, United Kingdom SE1 9RYMap
+44 20 7188 2679/+44 20 8806 4325/+44 7958322011
Neighborhood: Southwark/ Waterloo

Above Saint Thomas Church in Southwark is London's oldest surviving operating theater. Built in 1821, it was the scene of many amputations carried out with a saw and no anaesthetic. Blood would drip - or probably pour - off the wooden table and get soaked up by three inches of sawdust. One wonders what the congregation below would have thought of the screams emanating from upstairs, with the odd drip of blood seeping through the ceiling. With anesthetics unavailable, patients would often awake from their drunken state (they had a choice of passing out from either alcohol or pain) in the midst of an operation. Fortunately, the National Health Service's operating theaters have taken a leap forward, and medical students don't have such a frighteningly free reign. 

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Old Operating Theatre Museum & Herb Garret General Information
  • Open Hours: Monday to Sunday from 10:30 AM to 05:00 PM
  • Type: Other
  • Nearest Train: London Bridge
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