The Bovie electrocautery has become a fundamental tool of modern-day surgery, particularly for its integral role in hemostasis, yet despite this landmark invention and its widespread use, there is very little said about the man behind the machine: William T. Bovie. It would be thousands of years from the inception of cautery in medicine until the birth of Dr. Bovie and his device. However, his work in biophysics and collaboration with Dr. Harvey Cushing would revolutionize surgical practice in the early 20th century and forever ingrain his name into the field of surgery.
Recommended CitationDeLeon, MS, Michelle F.; Yeo, MD, Charles J.; and Maxwell, IV, MD, Pinckney, "The evolution of cauterization: from the hot iron to the Bovie." (2011). Department of Surgery, Gibbon Society Historical Profiles. Paper 35.