Medicine: New Bones for Old

To patch broken bones doctors use everything from rope to chromium nails. Last week in the Lancet, venerable Dr. Ernest William Hey Groves, emeritus professor of surgery at the University of Bristol, told how he had successfully used hunting trophies and soupbones as scaffolding for fractured arms and legs. Examples:

Walrus tusks. In 1922 Dr. Groves examined a farm boy with a deep cavity in the upper end of his thighbone. No scrap of human bone that Dr. Groves could safely snip from the boy was large enough to fill the space, so he...

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