The history of mankind is full of curious things. And medicine and its evolution is just part of an exciting world that today we will delve into a little bit. And it is today we are going to talk about a rather unusual animal when it comes to medical purposes: ants, and how they have been used to treat health issues.
Throughout history, physicians have had to find ingenious ways and solutions to cure patients. And this is where the Bengali ants come into play, as they were used for suturing. Yes, as you read, they were used for suturing!
Let’s set a precedent. In ancient times, physicians did not have the sophisticated tools they have today. In fact, they didn’t even have something as basic today as needle and thread. The main problem they faced was that they had found that the techniques they used with their primitive tools, when trying to repair a wound, especially in areas such as the abdominal area, were very difficult and sometimes not only did they not obtain good results, but they even perforated the damaged organs, complicated the healing process and even caused infections.
Bengali ants for medical sutures
They then decided to use Bengali ants as a tool for suturing, since these ants bite everything they come into contact with. What they achieved with this is an effect very similar to the suture staples we know today.
In ancient times, physicians placed ants on the flaps of the wound they were treating. And the ants were in charge of biting the skin by joining the two sides of the wound. At that moment, the surgeon separated the ant’s body from the head, which was clamped to the wound as if it were a staple. UNBELIEVABLE!
Moreover, surprisingly, they did not cause infections and did not need to be removed, since the body itself was in charge of expelling them when it no longer needed them.