Sibérie (Russsie): Scientists to recreate 2,300 y.o brain surgery after finding evidence of successful operations


Regarding the skulls examined from the Altai Mountains, the team concludes that 'it must be assumed that the main purpose of trepanation was intravital treatment of injuries and the elimination of neurological symptoms'.

'Pazyryk culture did not leave any written sources, and that is why it is hard to understand clearly the motives of making such complicated surgery and the methods which used doctors. 

'Modern neurosurgeons are sure that the manipulations of the head obviously were medical, not ritual, and were carried out by specialists who has some knowledge about the structure of the human body and its diseases.'

Inside bronze knife

Bronze knife - the vital tool in cattleman's life - in the grave on the burial ground Chultukov Log, Altai Mountains. Picture: Andrey Borodovsky

The ancient Siberian medics used the technique of scraping the bone, which gave the highest chance of survival during ancient trepanation procedures.

Archaeologists have not found dedicated medical tools but in almost all graves from this epoch - regardless of social status - are seen bronze knives. It was a vital tool in the cattleman's life.

Use of such bronze knife is confirmed with mass spectral analysis and X-ray fluorescence studies of the skull bone samples, say the researchers.