Anonymous asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 3 weeks ago

If you were to received a gun shot wound to the head in the 1800s, could doctors/surgeons do anything to keep you alive?

6 Answers

  • larry1
    Lv 6
    3 weeks ago
    Favorite Answer

    Yes certainly doctors and surgeons could and did do stuff. The 19th century (1800's) was a great time of medical advance, especially the late 1800's (1870 on), of course it was all primitive by our modern standards.

     Abraham Lincoln was shot in the head 1865, doctors could do nothing in his case, but in the US Civil War (1861-65) lots of soldiers got shot in the head and survived with medical help, of course a lot of them died too. Those that recovered would often be brain damaged/ paralyzed. It all depended if the bullet hit the brain and how much brain was destroyed. 

    In the 19th century they could not do brain surgery but you said 'head' not brain. Doctors then could relieve pressure on the brain by drilling holes in the patients skull. They could remove a piece of skull and the membrane below to get rid of subdural hematoma and then replace the missing skull with metal (trepanning).

    In the accurate movie 'Master and Commander' this is done by the ships  doctor in 1810 and the guy lives. The ancient Egyptians/ Greeks could do this too (trepanning).

    But no one could actually enter and operate in the brain till the 1960's.   

  • 3 weeks ago

    In the 1800's bullets were a lot weaker as was the power at which they were fired, so there's every chance you could have survived.

  • :;
    Lv 6
    3 weeks ago

    Yeah easy with morphine or opium they could operate

  • Nunya
    Lv 5
    3 weeks ago

    What kind of person can survive a shotgun to the head?

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  • 3 weeks ago

    Back in the 1800s there wasn't much they could do for you even today if you get shot in the head your chances aren't very good.

  • 3 weeks ago

    they might, depends on how far advanced they were then

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