The father of surgery and the Father of Plastic Surgery in Europe and Middle East
Contributed by Dr Jamal Jomah
￼ALBUCASIS : The father of surgery and the Father of Plastic Surgery in Europe and Middle East
Wikipedia has detailed the contributions of this great surgeon and pioneer PLASTIC SURGEON in it’s article in
Abū al-Qāsim Khalaf ibn al-‘Abbās al-Zahrāwī al-Ansari (Arabic: أبو القاسم خلف بن العباس الزهراوي; 936–1013), popularly known as Al-Zahrawi (الزهراوي), Latinised as Abulcasis (from Arabic Abū al-Qāsim), was an Arab Andalusian physician, surgeon, and chemist. Considered to be the greatest surgeon of the Middle Ages, he has been described as the father of surgery.
Al-Zahrawi’s principal work is the Kitab al-Tasrif, a thirty-volume encyclopedia of medical practices. The surgery chapter of this work was later translated into Latin, attaining popularity and becoming the standard textbook in Europe for the next five hundred years. Al-Zahrawi’s pioneering contributions to the field of surgical procedures and instruments had an enormous impact in the East and West well into the modern period, where some of his discoveries are still applied in medicine to this day. He pioneered the use of catgut for internal stitches, and his surgical instruments are still used today to treat people.
He was the first physician to identify the hereditary nature of haemophilia and describe an abdominal pregnancy, a subtype of ectopic pregnancy that in those days was a fatal affliction, and was the first to discover the root cause of paralysis. He also developed surgical devices for Caesarean sections and cataract surgeries.
Albucasis Contributions to Plastic Surgery
Are detailed in his encyclopedia Al-Tasrif,
it outlines the significant contributions to some of the techniques used nowadays in plastic and Reconstructive surgery .
These include the following :
1. basics of surgical training and education in surgery,
2. marking incisions with ink preoperatively.
3. Use if catgut sutures
4. chemical peels,
6. the management of ectropion, entropion, trichiasis, and symblepharon,
7. the management of nasal and jaw fractures,
8. the surgical treatment of gynecomastia
10. the development of safety margins for skin cancer resection,
11. the cosmetic procedure of cleft lip and oronasal fistula’s,
14. polydactyly and syndactyly,
15. cosmetic gynecology
16. the invention of instruments that are explicitly used in plastic surgery such as scissors, toothed forceps, needle cautery and various scalpels [6-10]