By Lois N. Magner
Stressing significant issues within the historical past of medication, this moment variation explores the occasions, methodologies, and theories that formed clinical practices in many years prior and in glossy medical perform. It highlights practices of civilizations worldwide and examine of pioneering scientists and physicians who contributed to our present realizing of well-being and ailment. New sections hide preventive and replacement drugs, clinical schooling for girls, miasma and contagion theories, the specter of epidemic illness, altering styles of morbidity and mortality, public health and wellbeing and sanitary reforms, the excessive rate of therapy, ailments of affluence and getting older, and the emergence of latest ailments.
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Extra resources for A History of Medicine, Second Edition
Lowly animals such as mice and moles were used in remedies for warts, coughs, fevers, ﬁts, and bedwetting, but no creature has served the healing art as diligently as the leech. According to folk beliefs, this natural medical device can selectively remove the ‘‘bad blood’’ from arthritic joints and reduce the swelling of a black eye. Insects and insect products remain important components of folk remedies. Those who might ridicule the use of spider webs to stop bleeding 22 A History of Medicine may laud the virtues of honey in the treatment of bee stings, coughs, colds, rheumatism, and tuberculosis.
The ancients against the charge that their medicine was little more than superstition and magic. Operating within the context of ancient society, physician and patient expected incantations and charms to increase the efﬁcacy of treatment; certainly they would do no harm. Spells and Chapter 2. Medicine in Ancient Civilizations 41 stories about the healing acts of the gods were a source of comfort and hope that enhanced the effect of remedies and surgical procedures. ’’ Many aspects of the evolution of the medical profession in ancient Egypt remain obscure; even the etymology of the word for physician is unclear.
Chemists have attempted to recreate and analyze the components of 36 A History of Medicine ancient preservatives. Some scientists believe that an extract of cedar wood was used because cedar contains a chemical called guaiacol that is not present in juniper oil. Chemists were able to compare their cedar wood preparation with surviving samples of unused embalming material. The cedar wood preparation prevented the growth of bacteria and was quite effective in preserving animal tissues. One of the most peculiar uses of Egyptian mummies was the medieval practice of grinding mummies into a powder used as a remedy for wounds and bruises.