Thackery weighs performing surgery on a former flame, and orders Gallinger and Chickering to experiment on pigs. Barrow goes to extremes in order to pay off a debt and recover a missing tooth. After a bad day at work, Edwards takes out his frustrations at a local bar. Robertson is relieved when her pleas about treating a patient with typhoid fever are finally heard.
The setting: downtown New York in 1900, a tumultuous time of massive change and great progress. The series centers around the groundbreaking surgeons, nurses and staff at Knickerbocker Hospital, who are pushing the bounds of medicine in a time of astonishingly high mortality rates and zero antibiotics.