The first electric endoscope by Gustave Trouvé – A rare and pristine example – c. 1873

The first electric endoscope by Gustave Trouvé – A rare and pristine example – c. 1873




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Categories: Medicine, Dentistry, Diagnostics, Surgical instruments, Therapeutic & Functional Aids, Other Medical Antiques


Revolutionary – The first electric endoscope before Edison!
Probably at the end of 1872, beginning of 1873, perhaps having had knowledge of the stomatoscope of Jules Bruck de Breslau (1868), Trouvou returned to medical electrology.
He designs, builds and develops a new device: “The polyscope”.
It is a device intended for lighting for the inspection of natural cavities with a speculum: mouth, pharynx, throat, back of the throat, esophagus, vagina, rectum, nose. It is the first electric endoscope. It is based on the principle of resistance of different metals to electric currents with heat production, it is the principle of thermocautery. It is intended for the lighting and identification of pathologies but also for cauterization, the treatment of these pathologies.
The light source is produced by a fine platinum wire flattened in the middle so as to form a small incandescent disc which is very bright when the current passes, surrounded by a mini protective reflector. It is a mini incandescent lamp without a protective bulb, long before Thomas Edison’s first filament light bulb in 1879.
The present example is preserved complete and almost like new.

Some small lack of leather and cracks at the case which measures 18x10x2,5 cm.

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FR Le Zograscope

Established by Alexandre Piffault in 2014 and based in Paris at 5 rue de Condé, 75006, very close to Odéon, Le Zograscope specializes in antique and rare books in Science, Medicine and Technology, and rare antique instruments in the same fields. We have especially a strong interest in early and continental microscopy, early and special mathematical/drawing instruments, medical and surgical instrument, and rare technology.

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