Caesarean section: the history and development of the operation from earliest times
Young, John Harley
The authentic history of the operation may be divided into three periods, firstly prior to 1500. During this time the operation was occasionally performed post- mortem in the hope of saving the child. Apart from the passages in the Talmud and the Mischnagoth, previously referred to, and concerning which learned Hebrew scholars in and out of the medical profession have held divergent views, there is no evidence to warrant the belief that the operation was performed upon a living woman, at any rate in European races.The second period in the history of the operation extends from 1500 to 1876.The year 1876 marks the commencement of the third era in the history of the operation of Caesarean section, for, in that year, a new technique was evolved which was called the Porro operation, after its inventor, Professor Porro of Pavia. This operation consisted in Caesarean section, followed by removal of the uterus and its appendages, including the ovaries, leaving behind only the cervical portion of the uterus. But others, many years before Porro, had considered this method of operating.