- The Küntscher nail is an internal fixation device used to maintain the position of the fracture fragments during healing. Dr. Gerhard Küntscher pioneered this method in 1939 and it was used during WWII to quickly heal soldiers. This particular nail was used in an operation at Duke. In 1951, Vincent Anderson, an undergraduate student at Duke, suffered a fractured femur during a three-legged race. Coincidentally, Dr. Küntscher was a visiting professor at the time and was given the opportunity to demonstrate his nail technique on Anderson to students at the medical school. Anderson healed and three years later the nail was removed and given to him as a memento. Anderson donated the nail to the Medical Center Archives in 2013.