Oklahoma's Museum of Osteology claims that it has a 2,000-year-old skull that demonstrates that advanced surgery began ages ago.
The skull is believed to have belonged to a Peruvian warrior, and it appears to have been put together using metal. The man had surgery to repair a skull fracture.
According to experts at the museum, the man survived after the surgery, turning the skull into an important piece of evidence showing that ancient people could successfully perform advanced surgical procedures.
The elongated skull with a metal surgical implant is an indication that a Peruvian warrior got surgery after coming back from a battle. Based on estimates, this happened about 2,000 years ago.
The skull is apparently one of the oldest and the most interesting piece they have in their collection.
Still, the museum does not have much information about the skull. What is clear is that the man survived the surgical procedure.
The broken bone around the repair, tightly fused, indicates that the operation worked.
Initially, the skull was part of the museum's private collection. It went on public display in 2020 after articles about it created a public interest in the piece.
Peruvian surgeons are now credited with discovering several advanced surgical procedures to deal with skull fractures thanks to the skull.
The skull injuries were a regular thing among warriors due to slingshots and other blunt-force weapons used at the time. The procedures included a technique known as trepanation, which is used to scrape pieces of a skull from a patient without using any anesthesia.
John Verano, a physical anthropologist, explained that the Peruvians had discovered that Peruvians had learned early on that the treatment could help save lives.
Evidence showed that trepanation was done on people with severe head injuries and not as a ritual activity or as a means to improve consciousness.
The skull is elongated, which was a popular body modification. The skulls of young children were purposely deformed through binding.
Apparently, having an elongated skull was considered a sign of privilege, and the elongation was actually practiced by many societies, including the Mayas and Huns.