Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Tag: blood-letting

  • Syndrome de Lasth√©nie de Ferjol

    Krishna G. BadamiChristchurch, New Zealand Several years ago we saw a young woman who had an iron deficiency anemia, caused not by blood loss from menstruation (a common cause of iron deficiency anemia in females), but by repeatedly drawing her own blood by venipuncture and discarding it. This type of anemia caused by a specific…

  • Medicinal leeches in art and literature

    Martin DukeMystic, Connecticut, United States For more than two thousand years, the extraordinary blood-sucking abilities of the medicinal leech (Hirudo medicinalis) provided physicians with an unusual if not bizarre alternative to venesection, cupping, and scarification for blood-letting their patients (Figure 1). This therapeutic use of leeches was described in the writings of Hippocrates, Galen, Nicander…