Atul Gawande on the evolution of surgery over the last 200 years. Contains the answer to many of the historical questions you will encounter in General Surgery …and a fantastic money quote:
Liston operated so fast that he once accidentally amputated an assistant’s fingers along with a patient’s leg, according to Hollingham. The patient and the assistant both died of sepsis, and a spectator reportedly died of shock, resulting in the only known procedure with a 300% mortality.
(h/t to Going2MedSchool for pointing out my link fail. I added an http:// and that seems to have fixed it … for me … drop me a comment if it still isn’t working)