The Bizarre Experiments of Carl Vaernet

Among some of the most outrageous human rights abuses of World War II are the acts of Nazi doctors in concentration camps. Many of them used the prisoner populations immediately available in these camps to conduct nightmarish human experiments. All of these incidences are bizarre in their disregard for the humanity of their subjects, though some are little known. Among the less infamous cases is the work of Carl Vaernet. This doctor was interested in finding a hormonal cure for homosexuality.

While Carl Vaernet was not nearly as prolific as well-known monsters like Josef Mengele, he was no less monstrous. His experiments included injections into the testicles of male prisoners at Buchenwald and surgical implantation of artificial testosterone glands into the groins of 17 prisoners. Interestingly, not all of these men were homosexual. Perhaps he simply wanted to test the viability of the gland. Whatever the case may be, two of his subjects died from subsequent infections after surgery. That is one way to cure homosexuality and likely the only "success" the doctor ever had.

Clearly, the ideas proposed by Vaernet were medically unfounded. Today, we would even consider them absurd. Then, they caught the attention of Heinrich Himmler, who made it possible for Vaernet to conduct his experiments, but even the insane doctors employed by the Nazi party realized there was no merit to Vaernet's research, but the war ended very quickly after his experiments in 1944. He was captured and managed to escape (allegedly with the help of Great Britain). He died in Argentina in 1965.