Robert Liston’s Invention

This invention by Robert Lison can be found T Market Lavington Museum

This invention by Robert Liston can be found at Market Lavington Museum

Here we see a plank. It is quite long – 113 cm or 44 inches to be reasonably precise. At one end it is made into a kind of fork and there is clearly a hole through it. What the photo does not show is that it is dished along its length. It’s a bit like a giant razor shell. But what on earth is it?

A clue. It dates from the early 20th century.

Not enough? OK, it belonged to Doctor John Lush.

Yes, it’s a splint that Scottish doctor, Robert Liston devised for helping to set fractured femurs. It dates from the early 20th century.

Medical readers may well have known straight away since just about identical splints can be bought and used today. They are known as Liston splints.

Doctor Lush was part of a local family of doctors and farmers. We have met him before on this blog and you can click here to read about his life.

We have a number of his tools of the trade in Market Lavington Museum. This is one that doesn’t look as though it will cause too many nightmares.


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