Hektoen International

A Journal of Medical Humanities

Tag: Pulsilogium

  • Measure of the heart: Santorio Santorio and the pulsilogium

    Richard de GrijsDaniel VuillerminBeijing, China The heart is a musical organ. The irregularity of one’s inhalation and exhalation of air defies musicality, while the involuntary rumbling of moving gas in the intestines is embarrassingly analogous to the timbre of the tuba or trombone. Biomedical terminology and poetry are seemingly antithetical, but of the heart they…

  • The pulsilogium and the diagnosis of love sickness

    Donatella LippiGiuseppe MasciaLuigi PadelettiFlorence, Italy Doctors since time immemorial have felt the pulse of their patients, noting its regularity, frequency, strength, and breadth, at times using colorful expressions to variously describe it as “formicant” or “vermicular” (ant-like or worm-like),1 and diagnosing “love sickness” in maidens by the presence of the so-called pulsus amatorius. (Fig 1.)…