Medicine Through Time Affecting Factors

Basic summary of the effect of each key factor on different periods through time, from The Middle Ages to the 20th century.

Colour key -

Yellow - The Middle Ages

Blue -  The Renaissance

Green - The Industrial Revolution

Red - 1900 - Present

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  • Medicine through time affecting factors
    • Religion
      • (In the West) The Church controlled all education, so Galen was always taught.
      • (In the East) Personal Cleanliness was encouraged, and hospitals were built. Ideas were being challenged and developed.
      • The Church lost power, as old ideas were proved wrong. Women were still being accused of witchcraft.
      • Conflict towards the use of anaesthetics during childbirth.
    • Chance
      • Pare discovered the dressing of egg yolk, oil of roses and turpentine when he ran out of oil.
      • Pasteur blamed germs for disease before he was even in medicine. Chicken Cholera experiment.
      • Fleming's penicillin mould discovery.
    • Government
      • Increased government funding on research and public health .The liberal government and NHS.
    • War
      • A lot of war made travel difficult, however did improve the skills of surgeons.
      • Surgeons gained knowledge from new wounds caused by gunpowder. Aimed to solve pain, infection and bleeding.
      • Crimean war saw Seacole and Nightengale, and the Franco-Prussian war made Pasteur and Koch rivals.
      • WW1 demanded blood transfusions and other new techniques, e.g. false limbs. Plastic surgery also developed and women were becoming doctors.
    • Individuals
      • Arabs such as Rhazes, Avicenna and Ibn al Nafis.
      • Vesalius, Harvey and Pare.
      • Nightengale, Seacole, Jenner, Chadwick, Simpson, Lister, Pasteur and Koch.
      • Fleming, Ehrlich, Beveridge and Bevan.
    • Technology
      • The printing press, the microscrope, the pump.
      • Microscopes were improved, X-rays, better steel tools and new machines.
      • X-rays, heart-lung machines, plastic and importance of electricity.


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