Over the centuries, patients had particularly dreaded diagnosis of bladder stone. Left in the body a bladder stone could be fatal and the operation of lithotomy was also a long, painful, life threatening procedure. St Thomas' Hospital surgeon - the bodysnatching, turban-wearing William Cheselden - took the challenge to improve surgical procedures for removal of the stone. Without either anaesthetic or antiseptic techniques, he could remove a stone in under a minute. Nine out of ten Hospital patients survived his 'High Operation for the Stone', a success that the Hospital would maintain for the next 100 years. Hands on a human bladder stone!
(Not recommended for children under 12.)