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Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Medieval Medical Treatments

Medieval Medical Treatments - Medieval times + Middle Ages + 5th to 15th centuries, Many of the most disturbing medical practices in history originated in medieval times or earlier, before physicians and their patients knew any better. And some are still in practice today. If you think the worst thing ever to happen in the name of good health was the insurance industry, read on.

Maggot Therapy
Should you ever find yourself in the unfortunate situation of having decaying flesh on your body, don't worry. You can always drop a handful of maggots into the wound.

How do maggots help heal wounds? maggots are used to eat dead tissue,

The history: Maggot therapy stretches back to biblical times, though it was in the 1500s that a French surgeon first formally recorded the therapeutic effects of fly larvae. He was astute enough to notice a large number of maggots emerging from a hole in a patient's skull, and attributed the patient's recovery to the larvae's preferred diet. He was right, too, and larval therapy remains FDA-approved today for cleansing certain types of wounds.

What is the cleansing process known as? maggot debridement therapy,

When you're all healed, ask your doctor if you can hold on to your maggots. Find out in which hobby/sport they can be used. maggots for fishing bait,
Metal Catheter
Urinary catheterization is no walk in the park today, but in the old days it was more like a trip down a dark alley.

The history: Urinary blockages in men were treated by inserting a metal tube into the tip of the penis and guiding the tube ever so painfully inward until it reached the bladder, at which point urine could pass through the tube and out of the body. The bronze tubes were S-shaped through about the ninth century, when moderately less sadistic catheters made of gold, silver or copper had a rounded tip and only one bend to follow the curvature of the urethra.

Popular procedure: Catheterization was widely used to relieve blockages caused by venereal disease, which means the bent rod was passing through a urethra that was already sore and tender from infection.
The history: Though having hot fluids jetted into one's bum may seem a little undignified to some, the enema of yore was long favored by aristocrats and noblemen for the treatment of various bowel conditions.

The procedure: Long before plastic tubes and rubber bulbs softened the experience, water or other liquid preparations were injected with a clyster, which looked like a giant metal syringe and functioned something like a bicycle pump. After a metal nozzle with holes around the tip was gingerly inserted, a plunger was depressed by a helpful friend, sending the contents of the clyster rapidly upstream toward the colon.

Royal flush: King Louis XIV of France king louis xiv The Sun King, is said to have withstood, or perhaps enjoyed, more than 2,000 enemas during his reign, sometimes while holding public court.
The history: The fun thing about a lobotomy was that the neurological procedure was administered with an ice pick and a hammer. It was in not the Middle Ages but the mid-20th century that this treatment for psychiatric disorders reached its apex. psychiatric disorders include depression, schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder,

The procedure: The first transorbital lobotomy was performed in 1945 utilizing a technique practiced on a grapefruit. The objective of the procedure was to detach the frontal lobe from the rest of the brain, achieved by inserting an ice pick at the top of the eye socket, tapping it with a mallet and then swishing the pick back and forth to sever the connective brain tissue. A lobotomy could be conducted as an office procedure, saving patients the nuisance of a hospital stay. transorbital lobotomy definition, walter freeman lobotomist, brain frontal lobe controls emotions and personality including attention, short-term memory,
The history: In medieval times, medical theory was based on the concept that four humours controlled wellness. Illness signified that the humours were imbalanced — a problem handily addressed by removing large quantities of blood. barber pole symbolizes bloodletting + red for blood, white for tourniquet,

The procedure: In the procedure known as venesection, blood was drained by opening a vein on the forearm with a tool called a fleam, which was about the size of a chopstick and had a small blade for penetrating the flesh, plus a channel into which the blood would flow. The fleam sent the blood into a bowl for measuring. Leeches were also used for bloodletting, though it was harder to measure how much blood has been sucked by each swollen worm. barber pole symbolizes bloodletting + red for blood, white for tourniquet,
Saw Amputation & Cauterization
The procedure: When a limb just had to go, physicians used to go at an arm or leg with a curved knife, a bone saw or a saw like the kind used for lopping branches from a tree.

Dulling the pain: One account from the 17th century describes a patient's being given a small alcoholic drink then being held down by at least three assistants while the doctor went about the dismembering. The resulting wound would then be closed by burning it with a red-hot cautery, an iron instrument similar to those used to brand cattle.
Cauterized hemorrhoids
Are you sitting down? Had you been treated for hemorrhoids in the Middle Ages, you might have wanted to remain standing a good long time. St. Fiacre patron saint of venereal diseases,

The procedure: Another use of cautery irons was to reduce and seal hemorrhoids, the condition known at the time as St. Fiacre's curse, since Fiacre was believed to have cured his own pain in the rear by sitting on a stone in his garden. Hippocrates suggested that the inflamed anal veins could be relieved by plucking them out with the fingernails.
Tapeworm Diet
The history: Why eat right and stay active when you could just swallow some parasites and let them do the work? Tapeworm pills were marketed for weight loss in the early 21st century tapeworm diet pills banned by FDA, though their effectiveness — and whether they contained living tapeworm eggs — is unverified. tapeworm diet pills banned by FDA,

How it works: Certainly a tapeworm infection can cause weight loss when the worms grow large enough to block intestinal passageways. So, before eating some raw pork and hoping for the best, consider 10 minutes on a treadmill. tapeworm can cause seizures, dementia, cysts, meningitis and organ death, Heart worms, tape worms and whip worms,
It took a long time for man to understand that mercury works great in a thermometer but not so well in the bloodstream. Mercury poisoning can have serious and often deadly side effects. mercury poisoning can cause lung and kidney damage, intestinal bleeding, blindness, seizures,

The history: In the third and fourth centuries, mercury was used to treat trachoma, venereal disease and other conditions, but by the ninth century people had grown wary enough to test its toxicity on animals. mercury known as quicksilver,

The use of mercury was later relegated to topical applications, though the risks were still evident. Despite warnings from the FDA, mercury is still used in cosmetics today. Minnesota is first state to ban mercury in cosmetics,

What cosmetic may still contain mercury? | The first state to ban mercury in cosmetics.
The history: Trepanning is the practice of opening the skull to get inside a patient's head. Archeologists have found trepanned skulls with holes made by scraping the bone away with sharp stones, suggesting that even in prehistoric times man had a sense that behavior was based in the brain.

The practice: In medieval times, drills and saws were used to create a window through the skull — methods not so far afield from the approaches used in modern craniotomies.