International Museum of Surgical Science

International Museum of Surgical Science

International Museum of Surgical Science
4
Speciality MuseumsScience Museums
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
The International Museum of Surgical Science, a division of the International College of Surgeons (ICS), maintains over 10,000 square feet of public galleries committed to the history of surgery, and an exquisite permanent collection of art and artifacts from the history of Medicine. The Museum supports its Mission through medically thematized exhibitions and programs, in addition to a strong contemporary art exhibition program. The Mission of the Museum is to enrich people’s lives by enhancing their appreciation and understanding of the history, development, and advances in surgery and related subjects in health and medicine.
Duration: 1-2 hours
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Address
Neighborhood: Gold Coast
Located just north of The Loop, Gold Coast is one of Chicago’s most affluent and popular neighborhoods. The original Playboy, Hugh Hefner, once had a mansion here. In addition to prestigious hotels, historic mansions and luxury high-rise apartments, you’ll also find upscale specialty boutiques and Michelin-starred restaurants. Walk along Oak Street for your shopping fix and dance through the night along Rush Street. The Newberry Library is also a great stop to check out noteworthy exhibits and rare book collections.
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles212 reviews
Excellent
71
Very good
80
Average
33
Poor
24
Terrible
4

Robert L
Amherst, MA1,600 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2021 • Couples
My wife and I are both retired primary care providers so we thought that it would be interesting to see this museum. We basically walked through the 4 stories without finding anything that was engaging. There were some old surgical instruments , precursors of the Xray, and scattered artwork. The only thing that I found interesting were a few of the historical paintings.
Don't go out of your way to see this museum.
Written May 8, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Nicholas W
3 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2022 • Solo
The museum itself was very unique however the lady at the front desk was extremely vitriolic. I simply took my mask off while I was taking a photo and the lady snapped at me stating “I will not warn you again.” Just that encounter put me on edge and put a bad taste in my mouth for the museum and the people who run it. I’m just disappointed in how that was handled and I will not be returning.
Written January 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Paul H.
1 contribution
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2023
Based on rave reviews, I'd had this on my Chicago to-do list for years. But the museum proved underwhelming. The exhibits are semi-interesting, but amount to little more than hundreds of surgical tools arranged in display cases. A couple of galleries feature mid-20th Century paintings and sculptures depicting surgical techniques through the years; the art is representational and professionally rendered but, ultimately, uninspiring. The building itself is more interesting than the exhibits. Bottom line: I wouldn't recommend this venue.
Written June 22, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Happygoluckyang
Lansing, MI216 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2022 • Couples
This museum was great! Several floors full of paintings, statues, surgical instruments and facts about the first surgeons. Very interesting and well done. The woman at the front desk was delightful. It was a little pricey but worth it!
Written February 24, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Fanny E
1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Couples
Nothing to see there. Very expensive experience for a dusty, useless museum. There is nothing to learn or see in this museum. It looks like a messy cheap antique shop.
The majority of stuff on display is not explained, arranged without any chronological or geographical logic : you go through a turn of the century medicine shop to an uninteresting contemporary taiwanese surgical pantheon.
Any sophisticated guide book should erase this museum out.
Written January 18, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dini O
Cleveland, OH211 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Couples
I love offbeat museums and this one really fits the bill. Lots of old medical instruments. Some of them looked more like torture devices. I must admit that after seeing things like the “bone crusher,” I am very happy that I was born when I was and never had to experience being treated with some of these instruments. This was a very interesting way to spend a couple of hours.
Written July 30, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tawnee C
Rockford, IL11 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2023 • Couples
This is a charming and quirky little museum just south of Lincoln Park. It's not very big, but the admission price is very affordable. If you have any interest in health sciences or medicine, this is a must see. I most enjoyed the different skulls in the cabinet of curiosities, but the jars of gallstones and kidney stones was also quite something to behold. Definitely recommend. You will come away having learned quite a bit about the history of medicine and the surgical sciences.
Written May 30, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Davanrn
South Bend, IN756 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2023
We visited here since we are in the medical field. many of the other visitors seemed to be as well. Amazing examples of early surgical challenges as well as actual surgical kits from the 1800s on. A good 2 hour visit
Written January 16, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Dianna S
Baltimore, MD112 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2016
As a retired OR nurse I was looking forward to this museum. It was ok but not what I expected. There were not as many exhibits as I expected and many of them didn't have anything to do with surgery. There were a lot of "posters" with the displays so it was more reading than looking at objects.
Written August 30, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

michaelj108
Sydney, Australia137 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2016
Tip. Much broader than the name implies, covering many aspects of medicine and health care from nursing to pharmacy.

Tip. It is four floors and we started at the top and worked down, as is our custom.

Tip. Near the Chicago History Museum.

A museum of medicine rather than just surgery. I had expected cabinets of sharp instruments, and was pleasantly surprised. There were rooms devoted to the National Medical Association for black nurses and its long struggle for recognition. A simulated apothecary from the nineteenth Century was amusing.  A chronology of medicine in a statuary hall of immortals was informative.  
Written April 1, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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