Re-enactment in court demonstrating the dangers of a blind surgical procedure
The so-called "mini-incision surgery" where a small incision is made and blind surgery is performed resulted in severing the ligaments to both large toes, seriously affecting the patient's capacity to balance and push off when walking and skating (she was an amateur skating champion), and the jury found for the plaintiff. The significance of the exhibits illustrating the procedure was in the vividness of explaining the danger of inserting a high-speed rotating burr without visual control. The purpose of the operation was to remove spurs from the base of the sesamoid bones on both feet. The problems with a "mini-incision procedure" (i.e. not opening up the foot) were the heart of the case: it was claimed that the surgeon acted iiresponsibly and risked major injury in order to leave as small a scar as possible - on the underside of the foot, an area undeserving of high cosmetic priority. The illustration depicted a large left foot (30"x40") seen from below. The surgical procedure was re-enacted in court, when a metal rod representing the burr rotating at 750 rpm was inserted in the incision. As the "blade" was inserted, the first overlay was lifted up to reveal the anatomical details beneath the skin, showing that the device would inevitably sever the ligament located in the muscle directly beneath the incision and over the sesamoid bones lying beneath the muscle, since the surgeon would have to cross the ligament to reach the bones. The judge referred to the exhibit as "Bigfoot", and the jury could be heard snapping the rubber band that was used on the exhibit to portray the ligament.