Author Archives: Hektoen International

consultant

Francis Bacon’s natural philosophy and medicine

JMS Pearce Hull, England   Fig 1. Novum Organum Scientiarum, 2nd edition, 1645. EC.B1328.620ib, Houghton Library, Harvard University. Via Wikimedia. Public domain. Lord Bacon was the greatest genius that England, or perhaps any country, ever produced. – Alexander Pope, 1741   The early seventeenth century was a time when natural philosophy, the precursor of modern […]

Picasso and medicine: From early paintings to a syndrome

Michael Yafi Houston, Texas, United States   Pablo Picasso in 1962. Photo via Wikimedia. Pablo Ruiz Picasso (1881–1973) was known for his love of the good life. Reportedly, his last words were “Drink to me!” But early in his life, Picasso witnessed sick and dying friends and relatives in his hometown of Malaga, Spain, and […]

Godfrey Newbold Hounsfield: Inventor of the CT scanner

Arpan K. Banerjee Solihull, England   Godfrey Hounsfield. US National Library of Medicine. Via Wikimedia. Public domain. The name Godfrey Hounsfield is not familiar to most healthcare professionals, yet his invention of the CT (Computerized Tomography) scanner is one of the greatest radiological advances since Röntgen discovered X-rays in 1895. Nearly all modern hospitals have […]

Movie review: Bisturi: La Mafia Bianca

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Surgeons operating aboard the USS Harry S. Truman. US Navy photo via Wikimedia. Public domain. “Medicine is power. It makes us giants.” – Dr. Daniele Valotti in Bisturi: La Mafia Bianca   Bisturi: La Mafia Bianca (1973) is an understated, well-acted, and critical “doctor movie.” Unlike The Hospital, it is […]

The Barbie doll syndrome

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   1959 first edition Barbie doll. Barbie copyright held by Mattel. Barbieologin on Wikipedia, CC BY 3.0. Fair use. “In all the years I’ve been a therapist, I’ve yet to meet a girl who likes her body.”1 – Mary Pipher, PhD, clinical psychologist   In 1959, the Mattel toy company introduced […]

Book review: Am I Normal?

Arpan K. Banerjee Solihull, England   Cover of Am I Normal?: The 200-Year Search for Normal People (and Why They Don’t Exist) by Sarah Chaney “Am I normal?” is a question that many of us ask at some point in our lives. The existential angst of the twentieth century has resulted in a desire to […]

Koch’s postulates revisited

JMS Pearce Hull, England   Van Leeuwenhoek (1632–1722), a Dutch botanist, using his early microscope observed single-celled bacteria, which he reported to the Royal Society as animalcules. The science of bacteriology owes its origin to two scientists of coruscating originality, Louis Pasteur and Robert Koch. Pasteur may be described as master-architect and Koch as master-builder […]

Samuel Pepys: Stones and groans

  Samuel Pepys. Portrait by John Hayls, 1666. National Portrait Gallery, London. Via Wikimedia. Public domain. I polished up that handle so carefully That now I am the ruler of the Queen’s Navy – HMS Pinafore, Gilbert and Sullivan   Introduction Samuel Pepys (1633–1703) did not polish doorknobs to rise in the world. He was […]

Doctor Cabbie: No good deed goes unpunished

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Restored Checker cab in use as a wedding photo prop in New York City. Photo by Jim.henderson, May 14, 2011, on Wikimedia. Public domain. “I was bound by an oath that I took.” – Doctor Cabbie   Doctor Cabbie (2014) begins with Deepak V. Chopra (played by Vinay Virmani) reciting […]

Physical benefits of Salat prayers in Islam

Nicholas Ghantous London, United Kingdom   The five pillars of Islam are the foundation of the religion. They define a practicing Muslim’s identity and guide Muslims towards communally shared values and service to Allah (God). The pillars consist of the profession of faith, pilgrimage, alms, fasting, and prayer. The pillar of prayer is known as […]