One of the most sensational presentations at the 1923 International Congress of Surgeons in London was made by the Russia-born French surgeon Serge Voronoff. Three years ago, Voronoff shot into notoriety with his controversial gland transplantation experiments that, he claimed, shaved off significant number of years from a person’s age. Voronoff began his presentation by showing the assembled audience of more than 700 leading surgeons the world over a series of films where he showed “before-and-after” effects of his treatments on several of his patients, all in their mid-sixties to late-seventies. Within four to twenty months after the treatment, the films showed remarkable improvement in their health and countenance, with some of them riding horseback, rowing and doing other athletic feats. Voronoff claimed that he had treated more than forty men over sixty years of age, many of which were wealthy and men of respectable profession.
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Serge Voronoff and his assistant operating on an old dog in a laboratory at the Collège de France. Photo: ‘Le Petit Journal’, October 22, 1922