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Retired doctor’s collection becomes a Phoenix medical museum

(Abrazo Health Photo)

One Phoenix hospital is letting you explore medical history while waiting in the lobby.

The free museum is located at Abrazo Central Campus near 19th Avenue and Bethany Home Road.

Hundreds of items in the museum come from the personal collection of Robert Kravetz, a retired gastroenterologist. He has been collecting medical antiques for over 40 years.

“I started buying one small item for 25 cents and now I have several thousand items,” Kravetz said.

Among the items at the Abrazo museum includes a Revolutionary War era drug chest, a Civil War amputation kit, an opium pillow and a leech jar.

“[Leeches] were used years ago to treat various types of illnesses,” Kravetz said. “They weren’t particularly effective, but it was a very popular type of treatment.”

The museum takes visitors on a journey through medical history. Items range from the 1700s all the way through the 20th century. Kravetz hopes people stop in and realize how far medicine has advanced.

“I’d like them to come away with a little appreciation of medical history and know how far we’ve come,” Kravetz said.

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