Readers who may contemplate referring patients to practitioners of complementary medicine may be interested in the fate of Dr Frederick Axham. He was an English anaesthetist, who was struck off the medical register for medical malpractice in 1911 at the urging of the General Medical Council, having been found guilty of “covering” (ie, professionally assisting a person not on the medical register). Axham had — despite dire warnings — anaesthetised eight patients of Herbert Barker, a renowned bone setter (now a lost art), who had successfully set and stabilised the complex fractures of seven of these eight patients whose fractures had been found to be inoperable by a number of eminent surgeons.
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