Hosted by the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, the Mutter Museum is home to some of America’s finest medical history. The museum is built on two floors, and it features stories of old medical cases, specimen displays, and artifacts. The museum is open to the public seven days a week, and on Sunday, September 29th.
Though quite small, the Mutter Museum and the pieces inside shed a lot of light on how the medical field has developed. Dr. Chevalier Jackson, a laryngologist devised instruments to extract foreign objects people had swallowed. An exhibit dedicated to James Cardinal was extra informative. James Cardinal was a 29-year-old man who had a disease called hydrocephaly. “Hydrodocephalus represents an imbalance between the rate of production [of cerebrospinal fluid] and the rate of absorption” (Dias). His head was two times the normal size, and at its largest diameter, the skull measured 32 ¼ inches. Also, his cranium appeared semitransparent in sunlight and candlelight.
One collection is made up of 31 drawers that each have about 60 items of swallowed objects that Dr. Jackson had recovered from his patients. The drawers are separated into different categories: pins, nuts/seeds, toys and hardware, dental appliances, and dentures and teeth. Another exhibit displays brains of various animals, and the exhibit compares these brains to that of a human brain.
Another exhibit shows a breast with cancer, and has fetuses on display.
One can find information about hours, pricing, rules, and where to find the Mutter Museum here.
Dias, M., and V. Li. “Pediatric Neurosurgical Disease.” Pediatric Clinics of North America45.6 (1998): 1540+. Print. <https://pedclerk.uchicago.edu/sites/pedclerk.uchicago.edu/files/uploads/neuro_1.pdf>