Tag Archives: 20th century

Recognition at last

Jayant Radhakrishnan Darien, Illinois, United States Andrew Moyer, in his Peoria laboratory, discovered the process for mass producing penicillin. USDA-ARS National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research. Public domain.    “Though she be but little, she is fierce.”  — William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night’s Dream     The adage “out of sight, out of mind” appears to […]

Guaiac and “the old Guaiacum test”

James L. Franklin Chicago, Illinois, United States   Guaiacum officinale. Photo by Forest and Kim Starr. July 27, 2007. Via Wikimedia. CC BY 3.0. “The old Guaiacum test was very clumsy and uncertain.” — A Study in Scarlet, Arthur Conan Doyle, 1887   So declares Mr. Sherlock Holmes in Arthur Conan Doyle’s novel A Study […]

When the FBI investigated William Carlos Williams

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   William Carlos Williams. Passport photo with signature. 1921. Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Via Wikimedia. “And my ‘medicine’ was the thing that gained me entrance to…[the] secret garden of the self…I was permitted by my medical badge to follow the poor, defeated body onto those gulfs and […]

The illness of King George III

JMS Pearce Hull, England, United Kingdom   Fig 1. Farmer George & his wife. Published by William Holland. 1786. © The Trustees of the British Museum. CC BY-NC-SA 4.0. The Hanoverian King George III (1738–1820) was a diligent man of wit and intelligence, a man who enhanced the reputation of the British monarchy until he […]

The Warsaw ghetto hunger study

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   A photo documenting clinical research on hunger performed by a group of Jewish doctors in the Warsaw Ghetto in 1942. From Emil Apfelbaum (red.)… 1942, American Joint Distribution Committee. a photo between pages 20 and 21. Via Wikimedia. “The organism which is destroyed by prolonged hunger is like a candle […]

August Von Platen, inspiration for Death in Venice

Nicolas Roberto Robles Bandajoz, Spain   Figure 1. Portrait of August Graft von Platen. Unknown Author – Holzstich 1879 In Gustav Adolf von Klöden: “Unser Deutsches Land und Volk” (Bayerische Staatsbibliothek München/Porträtsammlung). Via Wikimedia. Public Domain. Weil da, wo Schönheit waltet, Liebe waltet Because where beauty reigns, love reigns – Sonette aus Venedig.   August […]

Article 99: saving money versus saving lives

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   A U.S. Marine Corps helicopter transporting wounded during “Operation Urgent Fury”, the U.S. invasion of Grenada in October 1983. photographer: TSgt. M. J. Creen, USMC. Public Domain. Via Wikimedia. “There are some patients we cannot help; there are none who we cannot harm.” —Arthur Bloomfield, M.D. Article 99 is a […]

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 […]

The secret medical school in the Warsaw Ghetto

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Poland, Warsaw Ghetto. Passers-by next to a Jewish child in rags lying on the sidewalk (sleeping, sick or dying?). 1941. German Federal Archives. Via Wikimedia. CC BY-SA 3.0 DE. In September 1939, Nazi Germany invaded Poland. The invaders quickly started to repress the Jews of Poland and confiscate their property […]