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EGYPTIANS, NOT GREEKS WERE TRUE FATHERS OF MEDICINE

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Author Topic: EGYPTIANS, NOT GREEKS WERE TRUE FATHERS OF MEDICINE  (Read 16264 times)
Bianca
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« Reply #15 on: June 02, 2007, 06:49:25 pm »



                                             ANCIENT EGYPTIAN MEDICINE AND EGYPTIAN SCIENCE

 
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Achievements 2700 BC. - world's earliest known surgery,
1700 BC- Earliest evidence of diagnostic medicine in Egypt
Ptolemaic Period - The Alexandria University famous for medicine, Herophilus and Erasistratus were permitted to dissect living criminals

Recently discovered "Auditorium" - Ancient Alexandria Library
 
Medical Knowledge - The Egyptians were advanced medical practitioners for their time, they are credited with being the first to use and record advanced medical practices, they based their knowledge from careful and astute observations, as well as trial and error. This led to the advancement of medical science worldwide. Scholarship fell into the religious sphere, and clerics were more interested in curing the soul than the body. No new medical research was conducted, and no new practices were created.

Autopsy and Surgery - The use of autopsy and surgery came through the extensive embalming practices ,this involved removing most of the internal organs including the brain, lungs, pancreas, liver, spleen, heart and intestine. Physicians followed the church approved classical techniques developed by Galen.

Medical documents 1) The Ebers Papyrus dated 1550 BC, is the oldest known medical scroll, and contains 700 magical formulas and folk remedies
2) The Edwin Smith Papyrus which deals extensively with bone surgery
 Mere reproductions of classical Greek and Roman texts hand copied by monks
Prescriptions 1) Honey and milk were routinely prescribed by physicians for the treatment of the respiratory system, and throat irritations.
2) Herbal Remedies among them all types of plants, herbs , animal parts and mineral compounds. The use of these compounds led to an extensive compendium of curative recipes, some still available today.
3) Head injuries were very often successfully treated by trepanning, this procedure involves the opening of an area of the skull in order to relieve pressure
4) Yeast was applied to leg ulcers and swellings. Yeast's were also taken internally for digestive disorders and were an effective cure for ulcers.
5) The dung of the crocodile was used in preventing conception
6) Ashoma, a disease of the eye, was cured using an animal liver, to this day extracts of liver are used to treat this and modern doctors discovered its effectiveness in treating certain forms of cataracts.

 Many theologians considered disease and injury to be the result of supernatural intervention and insisted that cures were only possible through prayer. - Contemporary European Medicine.

Dentists - Dentists used gold wire as a means to bind a loose tooth to a neighboring tooth that was sound. Patients would have their jaw bone drilled in order to drain an abscessed tooth or teeth. Teeth were filled using a type of mineral cement, and gum disease were also treated by using myrrh and other antiseptic herbs. teeth-pullers.

Doctors -  Egyptian Doctors had a basic knowledge of organ functions within the human body, except for the brain and heart which they thought had opposite functions. bone-setters, oculists, and midwives.
Hospitals - Healing sanctuaries and temples of Sekhmet were built, these would allow for physician and priests to treat the patients. Large hospitals built and run by monastic orders. Although little was done to cure the patients, they were usually well fed and comforted by a religious nursing staff.

The practices of  physicians included faith healing, the prescription for a healthy life, which was always given by a member of the priestly caste, meant that an individual undertook the stringent and regular purification rituals ,which included  regular baths in natron and other herbs,  the complete removal of all body hair including that on the head and genital area was required for issues requiring strictest purity, and maintained their dietary restrictions against raw fish and other animals considered unclean to eat. Also, and in addition to a purified lifestyle, it was not uncommon for the Egyptians to undergo dream analysis to find a cure or cause for illness, as well as to ask for a priest to aid them with magic.

 Magic was not always a part of the curing arts, it is an erroneous belief among the lay public that Egyptians necessarily thought that all or most illnesses or injury was the work of hostile powers. Physicians had a scientific mind, they studied practical clinical cases and documented them extensively. However, some of the more superstitious emphasis with regards to medicine, seems to have been a late development in Egypt's history, for initially in early  medical papyri, there is no mention of magical incantations or spells. At later periods spells or incantations were written on small papyri and worn about the neck to protect the wearer. A supernatural type of  spirit or a dead person, would be blamed for illnesses or injuries. Letters to the dead imploring them to cease their curses on the living were common.
The Egyptian physicians and priests were aware  they could not treat every injury or disease. When faced with such cases, it was often that the following passage would be written: "An affliction for which nothing can be done". No doctor, not even ones in antiquity could have been happy about facing such cases. In the Edwin Smith Surgical papyrus there are 58 cases, only 16 of which were deemed to be without treatment, leaving 42 detailed accounts as to diagnosis and treatment, most of which are of a purely surgical nature.

 Scholars from ancient Greece studied the medical practitioners of Egypt,  the most notable being Herodotus and Pliny, whose contribution to the ancient and modern medical records, reached from the time of Egypt into the modern era. The practices of Egyptian medicine was acknowledged by both Hippocrates and Galan as having contributed in large part to their own information and knowledge from Egyptian works they had studied at the temple of Amenhotep in Memphis. The largest medicinal compendium was compiled by Hermes, a healer of Greek origin who studied in Egypt, and consisted of six books. The first of these six books was directly related to anatomy, the rest served as a book of physic, and as apothecaries.
« Last Edit: June 03, 2007, 08:26:51 am by Bianca2001 » Report Spam   Logged

Your mind understands what you have been taught; your heart what is true.
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