Tag Archives: Egypt

The scourge, the scientist, and the swindle

Anne Jacobson Oak Park, Illinois, United States   Alice Augusta Ball, 1915. (Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain) “The leprous person who has the disease shall wear torn clothes and let the hair of his head hang loose, and he shall cover his upper lip and cry out, ‘Unclean, unclean.’ He shall remain unclean as long as […]

Leukemia past and present: lessons learned and future opportunities

Nada Hussein Giza, Egypt   John Hughes Bennett. Painting by Henry Wright Kerr. Unknown date. Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation. “The longer you can look back, the farther you can look forward,” said Winston Churchill in a meeting at The Royal College of Physicians in 1944. At that […]

Blood beliefs and practices in Iran

Bahar Dowlatshahi Tehrann, Iran   Circulation of the blood (human). Wellcome Collection. CC BY Blood is believed to have special abilities and properties in many eastern countries such as Iran. Even human personality traits, emotions, and relationships are referred to with blood. Angry people boil their blood; those who are kind and loving are called warm-blooded. […]

A history of blood: hysteria, taboos, and evil

Danielle Dalechek Norfolk, Virginia, United States   The witch no. 1. Joseph E Baker. c1892. Library of Congress. No known restrictions on publication. “Who has fully realized that history is not contained in thick books but lives in our very blood?”  —Carl Jung   Historically, the opposite of purity was often viewed and represented as […]

The barber-surgeons: their history over the centuries

Anusha Pillay Raipur, India Bloodletting from the arm. Credit: Wellcome Collection. CC BY “His pole, with pewter basins hung, Black, rotten teeth in order strung, Rang’d cups that in the window stood, Lin’d with red rags, to look like blood, Did well his threefold trade explain, Who shav’d, drew teeth, and breath’d a vein.” -The Goat […]

What did Dorothy Reed See?

Sara Nassar Cairo, Egypt   Dorothy Mabel Reed Mendenhall (Photograph by A. Pearsall, courtesy of Alan Mason Chesney Archives of John Hopkins Medical School). “They say that genius is an infinite capacity for taking pains.”1 – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, A Study in Scarlet.   Dorothy Mabel Reed Mendenhall opened the doors of medicine at […]

The Red Cross and hematology pioneers

Barnabas Pastory Dar es Salaam, Tanzania   The Red Cross and the Red Crescent emblems at the museum in Geneva. Photo by Julius.kusuma. Accessed via Wikimedia Commons. Providing medical care to suffering humankind constitutes an important part of the Red Cross’ service scope. History records an important connection between the Red Cross and pioneers in […]

Medical innovations made by doctors during the Napoleonic Wars

Craig Stout Aberdeen, Scotland   The Battle of Waterloo (1815), oil painting by William Sadler. Pyms Gallery, London. The Napoleonic Wars (1799 to 1815) brought great upheaval and turmoil to Europe, with as many as 2.5 million soldiers and 1 million civilians losing their lives. French military physicians, principally Dominique Jean-Larrey, made significant contributions to […]

Medicine in the afterlife – The Egyptian Book of the Dead

Maureen Hirthler Bradenton, Florida, USA   “And therefore shall I neither be borne away, nor carried by force to the East to take part in the festivals of the fiends; nor shall there be given unto me cruel gashes with knives, nor shall I be shut in on every side, nor gored by the horns […]

Corruption and organ trafficking in Egyptian medicine

Hossam Reda Ghalab Tanta, Egypt   A scar left on a kidney trafficking victim. Healthcare for the indigent in developing countries often leaves much to be desired. Organ trafficking is rampant, its prevalence rising alarmingly and for some constituting a thriving business. In Egypt, each year hundreds of poor Egyptians sell their kidneys and livers […]