Medicine Through Time

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  • Medicine Through Time
    • Medieval England
      • Disease and the Supernatural
        • People believed disease was a punishment for sins
          • They believed that disease existed to show them the error of their ways.
            • They believed the cure was prayer and repentance
              • The Catholic church dominated peoples thoughts and beliefs
                • They encouraged people to believe God sent disease
                  • This prevented people trying to find cures for disease
                    • The Church made sure that Medicine scholars learnt Galens ideas.
                      • This is because they fit Christian beliefs.
                      • They also outlawed dissection
                        • This meant doctors couldn't discover ideas about the body themselves.
                          • They instead had to learn Galens incorrect ideas
        • Witches were also thought to cause disease
          • Many people were tried and executed as witches
            • Some people believed evil spirits inside people could cause disease
              • Church members would perform exorcisms to remove the spirits.
        • Astrology was often used to diagnose disease
          • Doctors owned a type of calendar called an almanac
            • This included information on the alignment of planets and stars and how this related to patients illness.
              • Different starsigns were thought to affect different parts of the body.
      • Rational Explanations for disease
        • The four humours theory
          • Created by Hippocrates
            • The body is made up of blood, phlegm, black bile and yellow bile
              • These were linked to the four seasons and four elements.
                • All four had to be balanced for good health.
                  • Bloodletting and purging were commonly used to balance the humours.
          • The theory of opposites.
            • Created by Galen, a development of the four humours theory
              • Diseases could be treated using opposites.
                • Colds could be treated with hot and dry foods such as wine and pepper.
        • Miasma Theory
          • Breathing in bad smelling air causes disease
            • People often carried nice smelling herbs and flowers around to ward off miasma.
              • Miasma often prompted people to do hygienic things like cleaning streets which sometimes helped prevent disease spreading


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