Tag Archives: London

And for unto us… Medicine, Messiah, and Christmas

Desmond O’Neill Dublin, Ireland   Program cover for Handel and Haydn Society concert of December 25, 1815. Courtesy of the Handel and Haydn Society Archives. Although the very first performance of the Messiah took place in April 1742 in Dublin with the London première following in March 1743, the oratorio is closely associated with the […]

“My dear neoplasm:” Sigmund Freud’s oral cancer

James L. Franklin Chicago, Illinois, United states   Sigmund Freud circa 1921. Photo by Max Halberstadt. Via Wikimedia. Public domain. When the founder of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, died in London early on the morning of September 23, 1939, he succumbed to what he wryly referred to as “my dear old cancer with which I have […]

Samuel Pepys: Stones and groans

  Samuel Pepys. Portrait by John Hayls, 1666. National Portrait Gallery, London. Via Wikimedia. Public domain. I polished up that handle so carefully That now I am the ruler of the Queen’s Navy – HMS Pinafore, Gilbert and Sullivan   Introduction Samuel Pepys (1633–1703) did not polish doorknobs to rise in the world. He was […]

Physical benefits of Salat prayers in Islam

Nicholas Ghantous London, United Kingdom   The five pillars of Islam are the foundation of the religion. They define a practicing Muslim’s identity and guide Muslims towards communally shared values and service to Allah (God). The pillars consist of the profession of faith, pilgrimage, alms, fasting, and prayer. The pillar of prayer is known as […]

John Walker, vaccinator extraordinaire

JMS Pearce Hull, England   Medicine has bred many odd but audacious characters, eccentrics, polymaths and “truants.” One might argue that those characteristics attracted such people to careers in medicine: a chicken and egg dilemma. Conversely, some have argued that modern regulated uniformity has infected medicine and stultified originality. A little-known medical eccentric and heretic […]

India’s oldest medical schools

Arpan K. Banerjee Solihull, United Kingdom   Fig 1. Medical College of Kolkata. Photo by Dwaipayanc on Wikimedia. Public domain. 15 August 2022 marked the 75th anniversary of Indian independence from British rule. Since independence, the Indian medical diaspora has successfully settled in countries around the world and contributed greatly to their health care systems. […]

Marmite versus Vegemite

James Franklin George Dunea Chicago, Illinois, United States   Marmite and Vegemite are similar but not quite the same. Both are classified as spreads and are typically spread with a knife on bread or crackers. They may be regarded as cousins and are both derived from yeast. Marmite, though discovered by a German, is a […]

Herbert William Page and the railway spine controversy

Jonathan Davidson Durham, North Carolina, United States   Figure 1. Herbert William Page. Archives of the Royal College of Surgeons of England. The first passenger railway journey resulted in the death of a prominent British politician.1 During the 1830s and 1840s,2 railway travel became a popular means of transport in Victorian Britain. By the 1850s, […]

Book review: The Imaginary Patient: How Diagnosis Gets Us Wrong

Arpan K. Banerjee Solihull, United Kingdom   Cover of The Imaginary Patient: How Diagnosis Gets Us Wrong. Making the right diagnosis is central to the medical encounter. A doctor always started off by taking a history, examining the patient, and sometimes performing additional tests. But when a creditable diagnosis could not be made, the medical profession […]

Robert Bentley Todd

JMS Pearce Hull, England, United Kingdom   Fig 1. Todd prize for Clinical Medicine (left). Medal by Joseph Shepherd Wyon, 1861. Science Museum, London, United Kingdom. Via Google Arts & Culture.  Robert Bentley Todd (right). Mezzotint by G. Zobel, 1860, after D. Y. Blakiston. Wellcome Collection. Public domain.  Students of King’s College Hospital London are […]