Acta Neurochirurgica

, Volume 149, Issue 10, pp 1063–1069 | Cite as

Illustrations of neurosurgical techniques in early period of Ottoman Empire by Şerefeddin Sabuncuoğlu

  • M. Turgut
History of Neurosurgery


Background. Şerefeddin Sabuncuoğlu (A.D. 1385–1468) was the author of the first illustrated surgery atlas Cerrahiyyetü’l Haniyye (Imperial Surgery), which was written in Turkish in 1465. The purpose of this report is to present his unique contribution to modern neurological surgery.

Methods. Cerrahiyyetü’l Haniyye consists of 412 pages in three chapters, in which there are a total of 191 sections dealing with a variety of surgical specialties, including neurosurgery. In each section of the book, a sentence written in rhyme and meter gives the diagnosis, classification and surgical technique in detail. Şerefeddin Sabuncuoğlu describes medical and surgical management of neurological diseases such as spinal trauma, epilepsy, migraine, facial palsy, hemiplegia, low back pain, cranial fracture, hydrocephalus and abscesses of the head in his textbook.

Conclusions. Şerefeddin Sabuncuoğlu was a great surgeon in Turkish medical history and the sections on neurological diseases in Cerrahiyyetü’l Haniyye are of great importance in neurosurgery. Today, he is justified as a pioneer of surgery, an investigator and a medical illustrator in the early period of Ottoman Empire. His atlas is a modification of original contributions from earlier treatises.

Keywords: Cerrahiyyetü’l Haniyye; history of medicine; neurosurgery; Şerefeddin Sabuncuoğlu. 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Turgut
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of NeurosurgeryAdnan Menderes University HospitalAydınTurkey

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