Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Tag: liver

  • A series of messages

    Fung Kam Yan Hong Kong   Sign outside the author’s grandmother’s hospital ward. It was a Sunday. I sat outside the ward in my white coat, my eye protection fogging up, trying to catch my breath through the KF94 mask. My grandmother was inside, also struggling to breathe. The nurse said that only two visitors…

  • The wounds of Christ and Prometheus – two of a kind?

    Julia van RosmalenThomas van GulikAmsterdam, Netherlands The myth of Prometheus has been a source of inspiration for many visual artists over the centuries. Prometheus, a Titan, was punished by the supreme god Zeus for giving to mankind the Olympic fire, with which they learned to think and feel. He was chained to a cliff in…

  • On the way to school

    Mary Jumbelic Syracuse, New York, United States   Illustration by Joshua Jumbles. Published with permission. A thin line of blood oozed from a shallow cut in the skin, like the first stroke of an artist’s brush on a blank canvas. The second and third incisions intersected the first to form a large Y-shape. Sanguinous fluid…

  • Schistosomiasis

    Charles Halsted Davis, California, United States She was admitted to Ain Shams Hospital in Cairo after vomiting blood, having slipped into Nile mud while harvesting sugar cane eighteen months before. Surprisingly, she had not fallen into the current, but had regained her footing and survived her fall. Although all seemed well for the next year…

  • Hematoxylin and Eosin Abstraction

    Lily MahlerBirmingham, Alabama, United States Hematoxylin and Eosin Abstraction is a watercolor piece inspired by the histopathology of a liver affected by hereditary hemochromatosis. Bands of deep blue iron deposits cut through a verdant garden of hepatocytes in this composition. LILY MAHLER is a fourth-year medical student at the University of Alabama School of Medicine…

  • There is power in the blood

    Mark TanNorthwest Deanery, UK “Carne fa carne e vino fa sango” [Meat makes flesh and wine makes blood]— Italian proverb Laura was covered in blood when the paramedics arrived at her house. Her husband, in a state of shock, had gathered every available towel in the vicinity, but it seemed too little and too late.…

  • Blood and pernicious anemia

    Omar AlzarkaliBatavia, New York, United States Blood is powerful. The mere sight of it can cause an adult to fall to the ground; as a medical student, I have seen it happen. Faces go pale and legs can no longer carry their weight as they succumb to this primitive reflex. Perhaps this vasovagal response happens…

  • “Blood made White”: The relationship between blood and breastmilk in early modern England

    Jennifer EvansSara ReadUnited Kingdom The early modern body was thought to be composed of and ordered by an intricate balance of fluids, the most important of which was blood. Blood was universally understood to have two origins: the heart and the liver. Together with the brain, these organs formed what Galen called “the noble organs.”…