Tag Archives: Medicine

Learning the vocabulary of medicine (and other foreign languages)

Edward Tabor Bethesda, Maryland, United States   Some of the sources of medical vocabulary. Photo by author. Both of my parents were physicians, and their discussions were often medical. One weekend when I was about four years old, I listened to one such conversation at lunch and interrupted to ask, “When I grow up, will […]

Francis Bacon’s natural philosophy and medicine

JMS Pearce Hull, England   Fig 1. Novum Organum Scientiarum, 2nd edition, 1645. EC.B1328.620ib, Houghton Library, Harvard University. Via Wikimedia. Public domain. Lord Bacon was the greatest genius that England, or perhaps any country, ever produced. – Alexander Pope, 1741   The early seventeenth century was a time when natural philosophy, the precursor of modern […]

Picasso and medicine: From early paintings to a syndrome

Michael Yafi Houston, Texas, United States   Pablo Picasso in 1962. Photo via Wikimedia. Pablo Ruiz Picasso (1881–1973) was known for his love of the good life. Reportedly, his last words were “Drink to me!” But early in his life, Picasso witnessed sick and dying friends and relatives in his hometown of Malaga, Spain, and […]

Movie review: Bisturi: La Mafia Bianca

Howard Fischer Uppsala, Sweden   Surgeons operating aboard the USS Harry S. Truman. US Navy photo via Wikimedia. Public domain. “Medicine is power. It makes us giants.” – Dr. Daniele Valotti in Bisturi: La Mafia Bianca   Bisturi: La Mafia Bianca (1973) is an understated, well-acted, and critical “doctor movie.” Unlike The Hospital, it is […]

It always comes down to medicine

Matthew Turner Washington, United States   Blackbeard the Pirate. Published as “Capt. Teach alias Black-Beard” in A General History of the Lives and Adventures of the Most Famous Highwaymen, Murderers, Street-Robbers, &c. to which is added, a genuine account of the voyages and plunders of the most notorious pyrates. Interspersed with several diverting tales, and […]

On becoming a disabled physician

Mel Ebeling Birmingham, Alabama, United States   Hephaestus at the Forge. Sculpture by Guillaume Coustou the Younger, 1742. Musée du Louvre, Paris. Photo by Marie-Lan Nguyen (Jastrow) on Wikimedia. Public domain. The same prominent scar blemishes each foot: beginning two inches below my big toe, it slithers along the medial aspect of my foot, making […]

Villanelle

Jolene Won Chicago, Illinois, United States   Photo by Sandy Torchon on Pexels. I did not know today would be your last – we see no end for those that we hold dear. If I had known I’d not have let it pass. The nurse who knows she can’t set down her tasks continues on, […]

Serendipity in science and medicine

JMS Pearce Hull, England, United Kingdom   Photo by Tyler Merbler on Flickr. CC BY 2.0. The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not “Eureka!”, but “That’s funny…” – Isaac Asimov   Horace Walpole (son of the first British Prime Minister, Sir Robert Walpole) coined the word […]

The forerunner

Shafiqah Samarasam Malaysia   Skyline in Kuala Lumpur with haze. 2004. Photo by Nesnad. Via Wikimedia. CC BY 3.0. Southeast Asia has experienced detrimental, large-scale air pollution for decades. Known as the “Southeast Asia haze,” this transboundary pollution is largely caused by illegal agricultural fires in the forests of Indonesia. The lingering smoke results in breathing […]

On beauty and medical ethics

John Brewer Eberly Jr. Anderson, South Carolina, United States Lydia S. Dugdale New York, United States   Darian Goldin Stahl, “The Scan and the Mirror,” Stone lithography and silkscreen, 22″ x 28,” 2013. Private collection. www.dariangoldinstahl.com. Philosophers know that beauty is moving, arresting, enrapturing. It captures the attention and then calls the viewer to action—pursuing, […]