Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Tag: Erasistratus

  • The pineal: seat of the soul

    JMS PearceHull, England, United Kingdom The pineal for millennia had been a structure of mystery. In Ancient Egyptian culture, The Eye of Horus was a sign of prosperity and protection, often referred to as the third eye. In Ayurvedic physiology it corresponds to the sixth chakra—Ajna, located in the middle of the forehead, representing intelligence,…

  • The Red Cross and hematology pioneers

    Barnabas PastoryDar es Salaam, Tanzania 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 the subject matter of blood. The humanitarian service of the Red Cross began between 1859 and 1863 with the advocacy efforts of…

  • Erasistratus

    Erasistratus (304–250 BC) founded a school of anatomy in Alexandria, where he described the valves of the heart; concluded that the heart functioned as a pump; and distinguished between arteries and veins. He believed that the arteries were full of air and that they carried the “animal spirit”; appears to have almost discovered the circulation of the blood; and carried…

  • Lovesickness in art and medicine

    Frank Gonzalez-CrussiChicago, Illinois, United States Have you ever suffered the pangs of romantic passion? Count yourself lucky if you have not, for studies show that this feeling may thrive in any world culture.1 The defining characteristic of lovesickness is an obsessive thought: the lovelorn are tormented by the constant image of the unattainable love-object. This…

  • Neuroanatomy: A transition in understanding and observation

    Charlene OngSt. Louis, Missouri, United States Western medicine’s understanding of neuroanatomy over the last several millennia has reflected the dynamic cultural values and social norms regarding the human body and its function. The journey that culminated in accurate and reproducible representations of the brain required a tolerance of human inquiry, advances in preservation technology, and…