The Sunday Times has an incredible story about Henry Marsh, a consultant neurosurgeon at St. George’s Hospital in South London, who travels to a hospital in Kiev twice a year in his spare time to perform free operations using only the most rudimentary instruments:
The young man lies back on the hospital trolley and waits patiently as his head is secured in place with a vice.
Marian Dolishny’s nervous smile and worried, flicking eyes, betray the certain knowledge that what he is about to undergo will be anything but pleasant. But he also knows that time is short: if the enormous tumour inside his head is not removed, it will soon kill him.
Minutes later the team of doctors, including one of Britain’s most eminent brain surgeons, begins to break into the skull of their fully conscious patient – with a Bosch PSR960 handy-man’s cordless drill.
The work of Marsh and his Ukranian colleague Igor Petrovich is the subject of a documentary called The English Surgeon, which will be broadcast on BBC2 on 30th March.