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Strange Medicine: A Shocking History of Real Medical Practices Through the Ages

By Nathan Belofsky

Strange medication casts a gimlet eye at the perform of drugs during the a long time that highlights the main doubtful principles, strange remedies, and largest mistakes. From undesirable technology and oafish habit to stomach-turning strategies that damage greater than helped, Strange Medicine offers unusual yet precise evidence and an honor roll of medical professionals, scientists, and dreamers who inadvertently grew to become the clock of medication backward:

• the traditional Egyptians utilized electrical eels to healing gout.
• Medieval dentists burned candles in sufferers’ mouths to kill invisible worms gnawing at their teeth.
• Renaissance physicians timed surgeries in line with the placement of the celebs, and advised epileptics to assemble clean blood from the newly beheaded.
• Dr. Walter Freeman, the world’s most desirable practitioner of lobotomies, practiced his craft whereas touring on kin tenting journeys, cramming the again of the station wagon with kids—and surgical tools—then hammering ice alternatives into the attention sockets of his sufferers in among hikes within the woods.

Strange Medicine is an illuminating landscape of clinical background as you’ve by no means obvious it prior to.

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The healthy used to be positive, yet clients as a rule loved the "shoe fluoroscope" since it was once enjoyable. For the 1st time ever, youngsters wanted to be in a shoe shop. shop vendors loved it too-they received 10000 of them. The dishwasher-sized devices expense $2 ,000 apiece, a small fortune on the time. a baby may slide his foot into the laptop ' s base, whereas mom and dad, salesmen, and beaming siblings watched the motion via specifically designed vents and home windows. each one press of the button caused an x-ray cycle as much as twenty seconds lengthy.

By contrast t o hardy actual specimens of yore, Englishmen of excellent breeding now required consistent leisure and a spotlight, and occasionally even a protracted cruise on a luxurious steamship. Brunton wrote of fine males long past undesirable, and difficult males long gone tender, and sober males became to tippling. Bringing his significant clinical services to endure, Brunton came upon the reason for the ruinous epidemic-sulpheretted hydrogen. Smelling like rotten eggs, the fuel ruined the minds and broke the spirits of britain ' s most sensible and brightest.

However the gum lancet, carried in a physician ' s again pocket, was once as a rule the weapon of selection. As a prophylactic, a few infants acquired a burning cautery iron to the again of the pinnacle. to forestall the entire crying, medical professionals advised patent medications like Woodward ' s Gripe Water, made from alcohol, and "The mom' s good friend, " Mrs. Winslow ' s Soothing Syrup, which contained morphine and infrequently created child addicts. within the usa, it used to be held answerable for a rash of toddler comas and deaths. Butler's Electro-Medical Teething Necklace can have been frightening, however it was once drugs containing mercury that prompted an outbreak of " red illness" (mercury intoxication) .

The salve and the powder particularly did paintings, of their personal approach. They saved a physician ' s arms off the sufferer and enable the wound heal on its own. the nice Paracelsus along with his embody of chemistry and rejection of the previous methods, Paracelsus shook the very foundations of Renaissance medication. He additionally believed in elves, nymphs, water humans, sylphs, will- o ' ­ the-wisps, fireplace humans, and gnomes that dwelt in mines the place important therapeutic metals have been chanced on. Paracelsus sneered at scientific books and the folks who learn them, so in his personal 7, 500 pages of writings he wrote such things as " the extra studying the extra perverted " and "not even a puppy killer can examine his alternate from books.

The colour ofhis face will swap, after which you want to curse him eternally and in all eternity. . . Ifyou have a competitor whom you suspect to be a shameless criminal, be cautious. . . probably he'll fire up the urine for you and you may now not be capable of shape a undeniable judgment from it. Substituting reasonable wine for urine was once one other trick. however the smart Arnald, who invented brandy, was once continually one step forward: [A}ct as ifyou have been going to blow your nostril, wherebyyou placed the finger that has been dipped in [the pattern} on or subsequent on your nostril; then you definately will odor the scent of wine.

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