Pathology Spotlight: Acute pulmonary oedema caused by poison Gas in WWI.

In September’s Pathology Spotlight, the Museums Senior Research Fellow, Ken Donaldson, looks at acute pulmonary oedema caused by poison Gas in WWI. This is a lung taken at post mortem from a British WWI soldier who was gassed with dichlorethyl sulphide, also known as sulphur mustard gas, in France on the 22nd July 1917. His…

Pathology Spotlight- Kyphosis and Pott’s Disease

In the latest Pathology Spotlight blog, our Human Remains Conservator, Cat Irving, takes a look at Kyphosis and Pott’s Disease. The human vertebral column, or spine, naturally forms a series of curves, which facilitate our posture and balance as upright animals. At the neck (the cervical spine) and lower back (the lumbar spine) the curve…

Pathology Spotlight: Advanced neurological syphilis and the Tuskegee study

In July’s Pathology Spotlight, Ken Donaldson, Senior Museum Research Fellow, takes a look at a specimen showing neurological syphilis. He also discusses the highly unethical Tuskegee Study.   This specimen is of the dura mater, the outside covering of the brain. Normally this is a thin membrane as visible at the top and bottom of…

Pathology Spotlight: Horse-Shoe Kidney

Sometimes during development the lower ends of the foetal kidneys fuse together, resulting in one u-shaped organ, rather than the normal pair of kidneys lying either side of the spine. This is known as a horse-shoe kidney, or ren arcuatus. The fusion usually takes place between weeks 7 and 9 of development. The horse-shoe kidney…

Pathology Spotlight: Onychogryphosis

Onychogryphosis, or Ram’s Horn Nail, is a condition in which there is abnormal nail growth. It causes the nail to become very overgrown, often resembling a ram’s horn, as the name suggests. While it can affect any nail of the fingers and toes, it is most commonly seen in big toe. There is no singular…

Pathology Spotlight: A Tibia with Osteomyelitis

In this month’s Pathology Spotlight we take a look at Osteomyelitis.   This specimen is one of the best known in Surgeons’ Hall Museums, where it is featured in its own display case. It is a tibia bone from an Edinburgh-born sailor called Charles Anderson. In 1814, aged 17 years, Anderson was sailing in the Baltic…

Pathology Spotlight – Atherosclerosis

This specimen is an opened up section of the common carotid artery, present ascending in the neck, at the point where it divides into the internal and external carotid arteries, which supply blood to the brain and face. The specimen is opened out to reveal the inside surface which should all be as smooth as…

Pathology Spotlight – Staghorn Calculus

The kidney contains several chambers known as calyces through which urine moves by peristaltic motion before converging into the renal pelvis and passing into the ureter and bladder. This huge kidney stone has taken the shape of the pelvis and calyces of the kidney from whence it came, effectively forming a cast of the spaces…

Pathology Spotlight – Pleural Mesothelioma

The specimen is a slice through a left lung showing the yellowish-white mesothelioma tumour tissue encasing dark grey, normal lung. The tumour has grown around the pleura space – a virtual space between the visceral pleura that covers the lungs and the parietal pleura that lines the inside of the chest wall. This specimen was…

Pathology Spotlight – Leprosy

The latest Pathology Spotlight focuses on leprosy and the science behind it.  Leprosy was once a disease that inspired great fear. It was mutilating and incurable, and people believed it to be highly contagious. Sufferers – and those suffering mild skin conditions suspected of harbouring the disease – were segregated from society through the middle…

Pathology Spotlight – Osteomyelitis

  The latest Pathology Spotlight looks at osteomyelitis of the tibia, and the curious tale associated with it.  The specimen is a tibia, greatly expanded at the upper end by a large cavity containing  a sinus with a plug inserted in it. In 1814, at the age of 17 years, the owner of this tibia…

Pathology Spotlight – Metastatic sarcoma of the orbit

Sarcomas are a rare type of cancer that can develop almost anywhere in the body , because they arise in mesenchymal cells which occur all over the body– i.e. fat, cartilage, bone, muscle, vascular or the tissue in which blood cells arise. This specimen is  a metastatic sarcoma of the right orbit and the surrounding…