Terrifyingly, the Chainsaw Was Originally Invented to Assist with Difficult Childbirths

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If you thought that c-sections were horrible surgery that take weeks to recover from, well…you’re right.

But you should also count yourself lucky. In the (not as far back as you’d think) past, your doctor or midwife might have whipped out a chainsaw if an emergency arose during labor.

Basically, the chainsaw is so good at cutting through wood and stuff because it was originally designed to be able to easily slice through flesh and bone.

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Chainsaws were invented by two Scottish surgeons, John Aitken and James Jeffray, who were looking for a “more humane” way to widen the birth can*l when a baby was breach or became otherwise lodged in the birth canal.

Yeah. Instead of cutting open your abdomen to remove a dangerously stuck infant (like a modern C-section), they used to just stick a knife into your pelvis and start “widening” it so the baby could slip free.

Image Credit: Pixabay

And, as if giving birth wasn’t terrifying and painful enough already, the chainsaw was invented in the 18th century – prior to the development of a little thing called anesthesia.

The chainsaw was supposed to be a faster, less painful (somehow) option for a procedure called a symphysiotomy.

Image Credit: Pixabay

Neither the procedure nor the chainsaw is today used in hospitals – in maternity wards or elsewhere – but I wouldn’t be surprised to see it happen on an upcoming season of American Horror Story.

Because just thinking about it makes me want to scream.