Prior to the 1980s, many medical professionals believed that babies could not feel pain, therefore, medical procedures performed on infants took place without the use of anesthesia.
At first glance, these images from a bygone time are gruesome and jarring. Dismantled corpses with a thousand-yard stare looking past the camera while groups of men and women gathered around with tools in their hands, pipes in their mouths, and open anatomy books.
Come with us as we explore the curious history of the notorious Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas.
You may be surprised to discover that the 18th and 19th centuries had a rather barbaric approach to treating a stutter.
Despite the fact that Phrenology became rather controversial, it is important to note the cultural impact it did have in the years of its popularity throughout both Europe and America.
Paraffin wax was commonly used in breast augmentations, as a wrinkle filler, and for nose jobs. Unfortunately, the people who got paraffin wax injections were often left with much more to worry about than the shape of their noses.
Nowadays we are well aware of the dangers involved with smoking. Despite this, cigarettes were once recommended by medical professionals as valid treatments for a variety of complications…including asthma.
Creeped out by insects? Then you may want to skip this one! We will discuss how ants can be used to stitch wounds shut!
In the 18th century a common practice in resuscitation was to blow tobacco smoke up the unconscious individual’s rear end.
The clockwork saw is a fascinating, yet little-known invention that never made it past the prototype phase. Developed by WHB Winchester (1816-1901), the clockwork saw was a hand-wound amputation device. The surgeon would crank the handle tight and then let go, causing the blade to spin rapidly. Unfortunately for everyone involved, the saw was not…Read more »
(Image of a patient in a bath being spoon-fed by an on-duty nurse. Photo credit: Lensvid) Water has played a prominent role in religion for centuries and is referenced in the bible many times. It is no wonder that people once depended on water as a healing agent. In the middle ages there were…Read more »
(Image Credit: Anomalies) Many people don’t realize that psychic surgery was an incredibly popular form of spiritual medicine in the 1960s and 1970s in the United States. Spiritual, or faith-based medicine has been around for centuries and the validity of it has been debated over for just as long. Psychic surgery, or bloodless surgery, is…Read more »
The x-ray was discovered rather unexpectedly in a lab in Bovaria. In 1895, scientist Wilhelm Röntgen was conducting an experiment to see if cathode rays had the ability to pass through glass. He was mesmerized by the green light that was emitted and noticed that the beam could pass through most solid objects, all except…Read more »
Uroscopy was one of the most popular diagnostic practices of the medieval world and many early civilizations observed that characteristics of urine changed in relation to the well-being of the body (Armstrong). The academic literate world believed that close examination of urine could provide clues regarding disease and other bodily ailments. The word uroscopy comes…Read more »
Leprosy in Medieval Europe was a heavy burden to bear for those suffering from the disease. Even though scientists have a better understanding of what causes leprosy, it is still stigmatized in areas of the world today. In Medieval Europe, the official cause for Leprosy was unknown, partially due to the fact that microscopes would…Read more »
The year was 1793 when the city of Philadelphia was struck by a yellow fever epidemic. Muddy swamps around the city served as breeding grounds for mosquitoes, the insect responsible for transferring the virus. People began experiencing symptoms by late summer, and by October of that year, at least 500 people had already died (“On…Read more »
Throughout history, many people believed that bad smells were directly linked to instances of illness and death. Cities were often overcrowded places with low sanitation standards, therefore, diseases could spread throughout these city centers fairly quickly. People began correlating the bad odors of the city with disease (Parker 121). By the 18th century, the discovery…Read more »
(Carving of Mary Toft delivering rabbits published on 15 March, 1762. Below the picture is inscribed,”Believe not every Spirit, but try the Spirits whether they are of God because many false Prophets are gone out into the World.” Photo Credit: Pickover 113.) Mary Toft was a married English servant who became a press sensation overnight.…Read more »
It is not surprising to learn that a wide variety of tests were developed throughout history in order to check if a woman was pregnant or not. Most tests were incredibly inaccurate, such as the Egyptian method of pouring a suspected woman’s urine on bags of wheat and barley. If the plant grew from the…Read more »
Since the 1920s, it was not uncommon for women to see advertisements that made large claims about the cleaning agent, Lysol, and it’s ability to prevent failed marriages and unwanted pregnancies. In fact, Lysol has had a lengthy past as an unregulated female douching solution, and between the 1930s and 1960s, it was one of…Read more »