David Cottrell: Monday Morning Choices

Excerpt from Monday Morning Choices:

What Is Passionate Commitment?

In 1921, history was made at Kane Summit Hospital in Pennsylvania. Veteran surgeon Dr. Evan O’Neil Kane performed an appendectomy using local anesthesia for the first time. Dr. Kane had been a crusader contending that local anesthesia was far safer than the conventional method of using general anesthesia. Not many of his colleagues believed his theory and were reluctant to test it on their patients. They needed proof.

Dr. Kane’s patients were not excited about being a part of a laboratory study, either. After several weeks of searching for a volunteer to prove his theory, the surgeon finally found a candidate who was willing to test the theory while undergoing an appendectomy.

When it was time for the surgery, the patient was prepped and wheeled into the surgical suite. Dr. Kane then took the scalpel and performed the surgery. The procedure went as planned and the patient complained only of minor discomfort. Two days after the procedure, the patient was dismissed from the hospital ward. Thanks to the brave volunteer. Dr. Kane demonstrated that local anesthesia was not only a viable alternative to general anesthesia but also, even preferable.

Who was the courageous volunteer for Dr. Kane’s experimental surgery? Dr. Kane, himself-he performed the first surgery using local anesthesia on himself. He was so committed to his belief that he was willing to become a patient in order to convince other patients to trust their doctor. Everyone else was interested in knowing if the procedure would work… Dr. Kane was committed to find out for himself.

Are you passionate enough about your personal and professional commitments to put yourself on the “gurney”?
How bad do you want it?
The Self-Surgery of Dr. Evan O’Neill Kane
Monday Morning Choices

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