01 October 2008

Uvula crusher

In Aetius (II.iv.2), there is an interesting description of the amputation of the uvula by first crushing it in a forceps so as to prevent haemorrhage and then cutting it off. Hippocrates (I.63) mentions the uvula crusher as one of the instruments necessary for the outfit of the physician.
There is no clarification at the link regarding what disorders might have led the Romans to amputate the uvula, but in modern practice uvulectomy is part of the procedure of uvulopalatopharyngoplasty, employed to correct obstructive sleep apnea.

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