In 1890, evolutionists claimed the human body had 180 vestigial organs. What was meant by a vestigial organ and why was the concept important to the evolutionists?
A vestigial organ in man and other creatures was an organ or structure that was useless but had been useful at some time in the past in its ancestors. This concept was important to evolutionists because it supposedly supported the evolutionary theory.
My 1979 Encyclopaedia Britannica states man has almost 100 vestigial structures. Today the evolutionists are singing a different tune. As a matter of fact, as time has passed, it has become apparent that man has virtually no vestigial organs.
A tragic example of how the idea of vestigial organs could bring about serious negative consequences has to do with the thymus gland. I recall, as does one of my medical school classmates, that in the early 1950s there were some small children who would be having serious breathing problems.
Perhaps severe asthmatic attacks. A chest X-ray would be taken and if it revealed a large thymus gland in the upper chest, which is where the gland is located, it would be surgically removed or destroyed by irradiation. I recall us students being shown such an X-ray, the feeling was that if it was pressing on the child’s windpipe the logical thing was to eliminate it.
We now know the thymus plays a crucial role in the development of the immune system in children. I have often wondered what the subsequent fate was for those children who had their thymus removed or destroyed.
Another case in point are the tonsils and adenoids that at one point were considered useless. In the mid-1960s I was in practice in a small town in Central California. I learned that a doctor in town removed tonsils at the age of 5 because they were of no benefit. He did it to a neighbor boy. I knew he was behind the times because by that time it had been realized the tonsils were important.
Even now, some evolutionists believe the appendix is vestigial. Could they be wrong again? Just because we do not know the function of an organ does not prove it is useless.
God only knows how many vital organs have been destroyed because of this false concept.