Gigli-type surgical saw, Europe, 1894-1945

Made:
1894-1945 in Europe
Chain saw, cased, from Harley collection, c. 1830. Graduated black background.

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Chain saw, cased, from Harley collection, c. 1830. Graduated black background.
Science Museum Group Collection
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

Chain saw, cased, c. 1894-1945, from Harley collection, invented by Leonardt Gigli 1897

Leonardo Gigli (1863-1908) was an Italian surgeon who developed this surgical saw between 1894 and 1897. When in use, two holes were made in the area to be cut, for instance the skull. The metal saw was passed through and the handles attached. The saw cut though the bone without damaging the surrounding area. Although the chain was liable to twist and break it was cheap and easy to replace and store. Removing portions of the skull is known as craniotomy, an operation still carried out today.

This object comes from the Harley collection.

Details

Category:
Surgery
Collection:
Sir Henry Wellcome's Museum Collection
Object Number:
A600852
Materials:
brass (copper, zinc alloy), ebony, metal (unknown), paper (fibre product), silk velvet, steel (metal) and wood (unidentified)
Measurements:
overall (box closed): 20 mm x 101 mm x 92 mm, 0.1 kg
handles: 12 mm x 80 mm
saw: 475 mm .03kg
type:
surgical saw
taxonomy:
  • furnishing and equipment
  • tools & equipment
  • surgical equipment
  • surgical instrument