Medical experiments at Auschwitz
Most deaths at Auschwitz were caused by medicalized killing. Lead by Professor and Doctor Carl Clauberg, Nazi doctors at Auschwitz performed experiments on helpless prisoners. SS doctors tested the effectiveness of X-rays as a way to sterilize women by administering large doses of radiation. Dr.Clauberg injected chemicals into women's uteruses in an effort to glue them shut.
Dr. Carl Clauberg was given the camp to use humans and animals for experimentation in sterilization. He struggled to come up with a simple and quick way to sterilize many women in a short period of time. In 1943 he developed a drug for injection into the cervix and was able to inject it into a woman during a gynecological exam without them even knowing it was done. This injection would obstruct the fallopian tubes by sending a caustic substance through the cervix. Woman experienced complications frequently, including peritonitis and hemorrhages from the reproductive tract resulting in high fever and sepsis. Often, multiple organ failure and death would follow. Others were killed deliberately in order to perform autopsies.
According to Laurence Rees, Auschwitz; A New History,1 the most infamous doctor at Auschwitz was Josef Mengele, who was also known as the “Angel of Death”. Particularly interested in "research" on identical twins, Mengele performed cruel experiments on them such as inducing diseases in one twin and then killing the other after the first one died in order to perform comparative “autopsies”. Pairs of twins and persons with inherited anomalies were put at the disposal of Dr. Mengele and subjected to specialists’ medical examinations. At the end of all his experiments he would kill them with a lethal injection of phenol to the heart. In the next phase, autopsies would be performed and a comparison of their internal organs would be done. Mengele also experimented with dwarves, injecting them and other prisoners with gangrene in order to study the effects. Experiments like these took place on behalf of German pharmaceutical companies or medical institutes. These doctors and others performed these experiments for their own interests and in order to advance their own careers.
Works Cited[edit | edit source]
Rees, Laurence. Auschwitz: A New History. 2005, Public Affairs, ISBN 158648303X, p. 178-179 Rees, Laurence. Auschwitz: A New History. 2005, Public Affairs, ISBN 158648303X, p. 180-182 Shmalo, Sara & Bronwen, Blaney. (2001). IB Holocaust Project, vol 2,Medical Experments, The Final Solution: http://cghs.dadeschools.net/ib_Holocaust2001