It was all rather irrelevant to me in the end since I discovered that at the time the British Antarctic Society did not accept women (I believe this has since changed).
(Since 1996 they grudgingly allowed 2 women at the base - while releasing lots of PR about how go ahead they were for promoting women in this way!)
I guess prevention is the best defense!
I remember a related story of and Aussie medic imprisoned in a Japanese POW camp successfully removing the appendix of a fellow prisoner with only a shard of broken glass.
Personally, I just hope I am never in a position like that.
What did the surgeon use for sutures, anyway?
If I remember correctly the medic sterilized his instruments, himself and the patient with alcohol or some sort of solvent.
I have a friend who lived in the Yukon (north edge of Canada) for many years. He slashed his leg open with a knife accidentally while working one day, but he was a day or so away from medical care. He just cleaned it and then sutured himself up using a needle and dental floss. He eventually got to a hospital, the doctor told him he had done just fine!
Anyway, one of the bulls got tired of it, and gored the horse, spilling intestines out. Not sure how far they protruded, I wasn't there. The cowboys stuffed the intestines back into the horse, and used their pocket knives to poke little holes into the horses skin along the edge of the wound, and then pulled hair from the horses tail and threaded it through the holes, holding everything together.
My dad being the closest vet, our ranch is where they ended up. I can't remember if my dad saved the horse, but the cowboys sort of had a balanced day. Stupid in the morning, ingenious in the afternoon.
Then again, like you said, he could have just been pouring alcohol on the whole thing the entire time.
(See below for the link to the guy that cut his arm off to avoid dying. I don't think I would be able to make it through the bone, so I would like to have this option filed away in case I need it some day :)