Asia - Hektoen International

The Great War and the other war

Maryline Alhajj Beirut, Lebanon   Starving man and children in Mount Lebanon. 1915–1918. Unknown photographer. Via Wikimedia. Public domain due to age.   The reverberations of October 29, 1914 would carry throughout the lands of the Ottoman Empire and serve as an ominous premonition of disastrous years to come. On that day, following a surprise […]

Hope

Rima Nasser Beirut, Lebanon   Cedar tree of Lebanon. Originally located atop the police and investigative branch building in Martyr’s Square in downtown Beirut. Photo by an anonymous photographer. 2021. Private collection. Modified from the original by Rima Nasser. Published with permission.  “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.   This is not an incendiary rant about […]

Disaster code

Nohad Masri Beirut, Lebanon   Aftermath. Artwork by Hala Masri, August 2020. It was six in the evening and we were finishing our hematology board virtual meeting. Because COVID-19 cases were again on the rise, the hospital staff was working at half capacity, with the other half at home. The chemotherapy unit patients had finished […]

Lebanon during the catastrophe

Najat Fadlallah Beirut, Lebanon Julian Maamari Rochester, Minnesota, United States Abeer Hani Beirut, Lebanon   Hope in the catastrophe. Drawing by Najat Fadlallah. After several chaotic cycles of resuscitation attempts, the twenty-something-year-old woman was pronounced dead. This was less than half an hour after a massive blast shook the heart of Beirut, Lebanon on the […]

Lebanon: a thumbprint in medicine

Jonathan Mina Beirut, Lebanon   Fig 1. Dr. Debakey, holding the MicroMed-DeBakey VAD (ventricular assist device) with one of his heart transplant patients, David Saucier, a NASA Johnson Space Center engineer. Photo by NASA. July 29, 2013. Via Flickr. CC BY-NC 2.0. Lebanon is a country that has long developed and exported physicians and other […]

Return to Lebanon

Elie Najjar Nottingham, United Kingdom   View of Lebanon from an airplane window. Photo by Elie Najjar. “Dear passengers, we will be arriving soon at Beirut International Airport.” We had indeed arrived in Lebanon, the land also called Leb-Uh-Nunh and other names before that. Mesopotamians called it Chaddum Elum or “the fields of God.”1 The […]

Abhay Sadhak (fearless seeker): Baba Amte

Utkarsh G. Hingmire Nagpur, India   Baba Amte. This file is a copyrighted work of the Government of India, licensed under the Government Open Data License – India (GODL). Via Wikimedia. Murlidhar Devidas Amte, affectionately known as Baba Amte, was a lawyer who left his lucrative legal career to devote his life to the treatment of […]

History of medicine in ancient India

Keerthana Kalla Seattle, Washington, United States   Shushrut Statue In Patanjali Yogpeeth, Haridwar. Photo by Alokprasad. 2009. Via Wikimedia. CC BY-SA 3.0. The chronicle of medicine is the story of man’s struggle against illness. As early as 5000 BC, India developed a comprehensive form of healing called Ayurveda. Such traditional healing was first recorded between […]

The Bengal tiger: Panthera tigris tigris

James L. Franklin Chicago, Illinois, United States     The Indian subcontinent for millennia provided the ideal “jungle” habitat for the tiger. When the first Europeans arrived in India the animal was ubiquitous. At the close of the nineteenth century, when Kipling wrote The Jungle Books, 100,000 tigers were thought to roam the subcontinent. By […]

A plastic surgeon’s weeks in lockdown

Neha Chauhan Bangalore, Karnataka, India   As I tuned in to the announcement on March 24th, 2020 that India would be completely locked down for next three weeks to flatten the curve of coronavirus spread, my heart skipped a beat and then almost sank. I spent a sleepless night trying to understand my reaction of […]