Set of stomach pumping instruments, London, England, 1870-1901

Made:
1870-1901 in London
maker:
S Maw, Son & Thompson

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Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Science Museum Group
The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Set of stomach pumping instruments, with accessories for rectal and vaginal use, by S. Maw, Son and Thompson, London, 1870-1901

A large brass piston action syringe and flexible tubing are contained in this combined stomach pump and enema set. There are also accessories for rectal and vaginal use including a wooden cone-shaped instrument for treating prolapsed piles. It was made by London medical instrument makers S. Maw, Son and Thompson. The set fits into a wooden box with recessed velvet compartments.

An enema is the introduction of liquid into the rectum. The treatment dates back to ancient Egypt. It was a common treatment during the 1800s when this set was made. Enemas are now administered before certain surgery to either wash out the lower bowel as a hygiene measure, or introduce medications, salts or minerals into the body. In the past they were prescribed for complaints and ailments as minor as indigestion or headaches.

Details

Category:
Therapeutics
Collection:
Sir Henry Wellcome's Museum Collection
Object Number:
A166920
Materials:
case, brass, case, mahogany, case, velvet, lined, pump, brass, pump, ivory and pump, steel
type:
stomach pump
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment