Presentation on theme: "Greek society The success and wealth of the Greek Empire allowed the Greeks to develop a love of learning and to try to find answers to the mysteries around."— Presentation transcript:
Greek society The success and wealth of the Greek Empire allowed the Greeks to develop a love of learning and to try to find answers to the mysteries around them. There were two main strands to Greek medicine. The first stemmed from their strong belief in the gods. The god of healing was Asclepius (also spelt Asklepios or Aesculapius). The second stemmed from new ideas from Greek doctors, the most famous of whom was Hippocrates.
Greek gods and medicine The Greeks believed in gods for almost all aspects of life. Poseidon was god of the sea; Ares was god of war; Asclepius god of healing. Temples were built to him, called Asclepeia. It was believed that if a sick person went to sleep in an Asclepion, Asclepius and his daughters would visit him in his dreams and cure them.
The most famous of these Asclepeia was built at a remote location called Epidaurus, and was part of what would be regarded today as a health complex! Remains of the stadium at Epidaurus. There were baths, a gymnasium, a stadium, a library, a theatre and accommodation, as well as temples to other gods. Remains of the gymnasium at Epidaurus.
Asclepius Greek God of Medicine & Healing
Asclepius: Birth Mythology He was son of Apollo and Coronis. A mythological story is attached to his birth that his mother was killed for being unfaithful to Apollo but the unborn child was rescued from the womb of his dead mother. He was called as Asclepius which means “to cut open”. Apollo took the baby to Centaur Chiron, son of Saturn, who brought him up and taught him art of medicine. Apollo Snatching the Unborn Asclepius from the Flaming Womb of Coronis
Daughters of Aesculapius Asclepius had five daughter, each reflecting a specific feature of medical art: Hygieia - Panacea Laso Aceso Aglæa Hygieia Panacea Laso Hygiene Universal remedy Medicine Healing Healthy glow
Staff of Asclepius: Askelepian Asclepius carried with him a Staff round which twists the serpent, this was the symbol of ancient medicine and is still the symbol of medicine in modern world. This staff of Aesculapius was called as Askelepian. The snake symbolizes the shedding of skin as a sign of rejuvenation or alternatively it signifies dual nature of physician as dealing with life and death, health and sickness, medicine and poison etc.
Temple of Aesculapius: Asclepieia The temples of his cult, dedicated to healer God Aesculapius, were known as Asclepieia. Most celebrated Asclepieia were in Cos, Epidaurus, Cnidus and Pergamus. In the state of induced sleep, called as enkoimesis, the priest presented himself before the patient to administer medical advice, if he happened to be awake. If he slept, as was usually the case, the advice came in a dream, which was interpreted afterwards by the priests, who then prescribed catharsis, emesis, blood-letting or whatever remedy seemed appropriate. Before these patients left the temple a tablets were hung on the wall of the temple engraving there name, brief history and treatment offered. Temple of Aesculapius
A man with an abscess in his abdomen went to sleep in the Temple of Asclepius. In his dreams, Asclepius ordered the servants that accompanied him to grip him and hold him tightly so that he could cut open his abdomen. The man tried to escape but they gripped him and bound him. Asclepius cut open his belly, removed the abscess, stitched him up and released him. The man woke up sound and left the temple, but the floor was covered in blood. From an inscription found on a stone column in the temple at Epidaurus, c. 370–250 BC:
New Greek medical ideas In addition to the belief in the healing powers of Asclepius, there was also a lot of respect for other medical theories. The Greeks loved philosophy and came up with lots of new ideas as a result. One important theory was the Theory of the Four Humours which became the basis for Greek medical practice. The theory of the four humours was thought to have originated in ancient Egypt or Mesopotamia but Hippocrates developed the theory further. Despite being wrong, it was a theory which was to be widely used by doctors for nearly 2,000 years. The reliance on the theory was so heavy that it prevented doctors from looking elsewhere for causes of disease.
The Theory of the Four Humours The Theory of the Four Humours was influenced by Greek ideas about balance. The Greeks believed that the world was made up of four elements: AirFireEarthWater They noted that these elements had different properties – water was wet, fire was hot, etc. Through observing the four seasons, they believed that each season must have a dominant element.
AirFireEarthWater SpringSummerAutumnWinter Hot and dry Warm and moist Cold and dry Cold and wet
The Four Humours Greek doctors noted that patients’ symptoms varied with the seasons – heat rashes in summer, wet runny noses in winter. From this, they deduced that the human body was made up of four vital liquids which they referred to as ‘humours’: Blood Phlegm (sputum) Yellow bile Black bile
Each of the humours was related to a season and element: AirFireEarthWater SpringSummerAutumnWinter BloodYellow bileBlack bilePhlegm
The theory stated that these humours had to be in balance for the body to be well, that is there had to be the correct amount of each fluid. If there was too much or too little of one or more of the humours it was thought that the person would become ill. Medical treatments aimed to put the humours back in balance. In order to find out which humour was imbalanced, Greek doctors would perform a diagnosis on the patient by studying their symptoms. Clinical diagnosis DiagnosisPrognosisObservationTreatment
Treating illness Greek medical treatments aimed to rebalance the humours. Treatments prescribed included: Bleeding Vomiting purging.
Bleeding Bleeding a patient was a treatment which was used right through to the 19th century. A scratch was made in the skin and the blood was let out into a cup.
Purging Purging the bowel or making the patient vomit involved herbal concoctions: “If the pain is under the diaphragm, clear the bowels with a medicine made from black hellebore, cumin or other fragrant herbs.” The Greek doctors were also aware of the need to prevent illness and advised their patients on hygiene, diet and exercise: “He should wash face and eyes using pure water. He should rub his teeth inside and outside with the fingers using fine peppermint powder. Long walks before meals clear out the body … and give it more power for digesting.”
Hippocrates – the 'father' of modern medicine Legend has it that Hippocrates was born in Cos in about 460 BC. He was the most famous Greek doctor, and recorded his ideas and discoveries in a number of books. He and his followers broke with the tradition of believing that the gods caused and cured disease and he is looked upon as the founder of modern medicine. He encouraged doctors to observe symptoms and to look for causes based on those symptoms.
Review Questions - 1 Who is known as the world's first physician? A. Imhotep (Egyptian 2650 BC) B. Babylonians C. Hippocrates D. Romans
2 Who is considered to be the Father of Western Medicine? A. Imhotep B. Romans C. Hippocrates D. William Harvey
3 Historians rely on materials from the past to understand the present. A first hand pieces of evidence from the people who saw an event is usually classified as: A. Tertiary source B. Primary Source C. Secondary Source D. All of the above
4 Egypt developed as a civilization and their theory of diseases around which of the following rivers A. Tigris B. Euphrates C. Nile D. Amazon
5 Priests in ancient Egypt held special power because: A. they judged people's lives. B. their magic and prayers were believed to influence the gods. C. they served the pharaoh. D. they set rules for people's lives.
6 Greek medicine partly stemmed from their strong belief in the gods. The god of healing in ancient Greek is: A. Hygieia – B. Panacea C. Laso D. Aceso E. Asclepius
The Four Humurs Humour Blood Yellow Bile Phlegm Black Bile Season Spring Summ er Winter Autum Element air fire Water Earth Organ Heart Liver Brain Spleen Quality Ancient Name Tempram ent warm and moist warm and dry cold and moist cold and dry Sanguis Kholé phlégma melas kholé sangui ne Choleric Phlegma tic Melanc holic
Herophilus (335 – 280 BC) Herophilus was a rationalist physician who taught and practiced in Ptolemaic Alexandria during a golden period of scientific enquiry. He was born in Chalcedon on the Asiatic side of the Bosporus and may have been apprenticed to Praxagoras of Cos during his medical training
Herophilus Contribution to Medicine Herophilus had extensive anatomical knowledge, acquired by dissecting human bodies. He is considered to be the “father of anatomy” and co founder of autopsy. His most important contribution in the history of medicine was the development of a theory for the diagnostic value of the pulse. A pulse it the rhythmic expansion of an artery produced when a bolus of blood (stroke volume) is forced into it by a contraction of the heart. It can be described based on its: Rate Rhythm Volume Hypokinetic pulse Hyperkinetic pulse
Herophilus (cont) He discribed and named the Prostate gland He first applied the name of twelve-inche or duodenum (dodekadaktulos) to the first part of small intestine He studied the brain and was the first to apply the name choriod or vascular membrane to that which is found in the cr.ebral ventricles Herophilus also knew the straight venous sinus which still bears his name. He wrote 9 books on medicine which have been lost in the Library of Alexandria ‘[Herophilus] that doctor, or rather butcher, who cut up innumerable human beings so that he could investigate nature’ – Tertullian, On the Soul
Herophilus (Summary) Father of anatomy Medical training from Praxagoras One of the firsts anatomists First to dissect humans and animals, discovering many mysteries about the body Wrote about nine works Helped set basis for anatomists
Erasistratos ( B.C) Erasistratos studied in Athens and continued the work of Herophilus in Alenxandria. He is considered to be the “father of physiology” and co-founder of autopsy. He determined that the brain was the originating point of all nerves. He distinguished sensory from motor nerves. He was the first to dispel the notion that nerves are hollow and filled with air
Erasistratos (cont) He understood that the hear served as a pump and described the function of the heart valves. Erasistratos theorized that arteries and veins originate from the heart finally spreading into minute capillaries invisible to human eye. He also described the structure and function of the gastic muscles He is credited with one of the first in-depth descriptions of the cerebrum and cerebellum. He wrote more than 50 medical works the majority of which is now lost.
Erasistatus (summary) Born on the island of chios Differentiated between cerebrum and cerebellum. Distinguished motor vs. sensory nerves. Found function of the epiglottis & the valves of the heart. Theory that parts of the body supplied with nutrients and blood through veins and capillaries.
Following the rise of Christianity in the first century CE, popular opinion once again turned against human dissection, which the early Christian Church labeled a sin. Keen to denounce such unholy behavior, some ancient scholars seized upon tales that Herophilus and Erasistratus’ dissections were not limited only to the dead, but that they experimented on the living as well, branding the two anatomists the ‘butchers of Alexandria’.
To the Asklepieia came many sick persons for the healing ritual known as “incubation," or temple sleep. On arrival the patient was expected to make a sacrificial offering, arid to purify himself by bathing. Then he lay down to sleep in the abaton, a long colonnade open to the air at each side. During the night Aesculapius appeared in a dream and gave advice, or in certain cases performed an operation, and in the morning the patient departed cured.
The revelation which came to the sleeping patient in a dream consisted of a vision of Aesculapius surrounded by dazzling lights, or, in other cases, only the voice of the god. Incubation apparently depended upon the methods adopted by the Delphian Oracle, and both phenomena could doubtless be explained as forms of psychotherapy.
Our knowledge of incubation is largely derived from inscriptions on the stone stela, or tablets, which have been found at Epidaurus. Forty-four cases are described, and among them are the following :
Case of Post dated pregnancy Klco was with child for five years. After these five years of pregnancy she came as a uppliant to the god and slept in the abaton. As soon as she left it and got outside the temple precincts she bore a son, who immediately after birth washed himself at the fountain and walked about with his mother.
A Dumb boy A dumb boy came as a suppliant to the temple to recover his voice. When he had performed the sacrifices and fulfilled the rites, the temple priest who bore the sacrificial fire turned to the boy's father and said, " Do you promise to pay within a year the fres for the cure, if you obtain that for which you have come ? Suddenly the boy answered, “ I do." His father was greatly astonished at this, and told his son to speak again. The boy repeated the words and so was cured.
Case of Trauma Euippos had had for six years the point of a spear in his cheek. As he was sleeping the god extracted the spear-head and gave it to him into his hands. When day came Euippos departed cured, and he held the spear-head in his hands.
Case of Insomnia Agestratos suffered from insomnia on account of headaches. As soon as he came to the abaton he fell asleep and had a dream. He thought that the god cured him of his headache and, making him stand up, taught him wrestling. When day came he departed cured, and after a short time he competed at the Nemean games and was victor in restling.
Summary In reading those records of temple treatment one is impressed by two facts. All cases without exception were cured, and the cure appeared to be miraculous, as many had been regarded as incurable. Failures were not recorded and deaths were never mentioned.
Summary Although in the early days of the cult of incubation the methods employed were mystical and supernatural, physical therapy, comprising diet, bathing, and exercise, played an increasingly important part in the cure.
Incubation Today Though incubation was practiced as early as the eighth century B.C. It was continued far into the Christian era, and even to-day, in Greece, in Asia Minor and in Italy, traces of this ancient cult may still be found.
Incubation and Hippocrate While these healing temples were an important part of Greek medical care, the values they embodied had little impact on the Hippocratic Corpus. The Corpus treatises assume that disease has a natural cause, even with the dreaded disease called “The Sacred Disease” – i.e epileptic attack.
Hippocrates and Cause of illness “it is thus with regard to the disease called Sacred: it appears to me to be nowise more divine nor more sacred than other diseases, but has a natural cause from which it originates like other affections. Men regard its nature and cause as divine from ignorance and wonder, because it is not at all like to other diseases. And this notion of divinity is kept up by their inability to comprehend it, and the simplicity of the mode by which it is cured, for men are freed from it by purifications and incantations. But if it is reckoned divine because it is wonderful, instead of one there are many diseases which would be sacred”
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