Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Tag: Nicander of Colophon.

  • Medicinal leeches in art and literature

    Martin DukeMystic, Connecticut, United States For more than two thousand years, the extraordinary blood-sucking abilities of the medicinal leech (Hirudo medicinalis) provided physicians with an unusual if not bizarre alternative to venesection, cupping, and scarification for blood-letting their patients (Figure 1). This therapeutic use of leeches was described in the writings of Hippocrates, Galen, Nicander…

  • “Rich man, poor man”: A history of lead poisoning

    Mariel Tishma Chicago, Illinois, United States Comfort in the Gout. Thomas Rowlandson. 1802. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The history of lead poisoning is the history of human industry. For unmarked time, lead has been around causing abdominal pain, constipation, nausea, and irritability, as well as conditions like heart disease, kidney disease, reduced fertility, and…