It's a crazy theory but Henry Cotton was intrigued with his mentor, Adolf Meyer's theory that mental illnesses could be caused by bacterial infection. So in Cotton's mind, the best way then to "cure" these illnesses is by removing the infected areas.
Cotton attacked the teeth first and slowly began to work his way towards other organs. The mouth, he reasoned, was the most obvious place were germs lurked. So he started by removing infected teeth, unerupted teeth, teeth with cavities and abscesses. He even had his own teeth pulled out, as well as that of his wife and two sons, as a prophylactic measure to avoid the risk of infection.
When pulling teeth didn’t cure his patients, he doubled his efforts and in the process removed their tonsils and sinuses. If a cure was still not achieved, other organs were suspected of harboring infection. Soon patients got relieved of their spleens, colons, testicles, ovaries, gall bladders, and other organs.
(Image credit: Amusing Planet)