History- Individuals in the Renaissance

Vesalius 1

Andreas Vesalius was born on 31 December 1514 in Brussels, Belgium, then part of the Holy Roman Empire. He came from a family of physicians and both his father and grandfather had served the holy roman emperor. Vesalius studied medicine in Paris but was forced to leave before completing his degree whent he Holy Roman Empire declared war on France. He then studied at the University of Louvain, ad then moved to Padua to study for his doctorate. Upon completion in 1537 he was immediately offered the chair of surgery and anatomy.

Surgery and anatomy were then considered of little importance in comparison to the other branches of medicine. However , Vesalius believed that surgery had to be grounded in anatomy. Unusually he always performed dissections himself and produced anatomical charts of the blood and nervous systems as a reference aid for his students which were widely copied.

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Vesalius 2

In the same year Vesalius wrote a pamphlet on blood letting , a popular treatment for a variety of illnesses. There was a debate about where in the body the blood should be taken from.Vesalius' pamphlet was suported by his knowledge of the blood system and he showed clearly how anatomical dissection could be used to test speculation, and underlined the importance of understanding the struture of the body in medicine .

In 1539, his supply of dissection material increased when a Paduan judge became interested in Vesalius' work, and made bodies of executed criminals available to him. Vesalius was now able to make repeated and comaritive dissections of humans. This was in marked constrast to Galen, the standard authority on anatomy who, for religious reasons had been restricted to animals, mainly apes .Vesalius realised that Galen's and his own observations differed, and that humans do not share the same anatomy as apes.

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Vesalius 3

In 1543, Vesalius published 'De Humani Corporis Fabrica'. The book was based largely on human dissection, and transformed anatomy into a subject that relied on observations taken directly from human dissections. Vesalius now left anatomical reserch to take up medical practice. Maintaining the tradition of imperial service, he became physician to the imperial court of Emperor Charles V and in 1555 took service with Charles' son, Phillip II of Spain.

In 1564, he left for a trip to the Holy Land but died on 15 October 1564 on the Greek island of Zakynthos during the journey home.

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Paré 1

Ambroise Paré, born 1510, Bourg-Hersent, France - Died Dec 20 1590 was a French Physician one of the most notabl surgeons of the European Rennaissance, regarded by some medical historians as the father of modern surgery.

About 1533 Paré went to Paris, where he soon became a barber-surgeon apprentice at the Hôtel - Dieu .He was taught anatomy and surgery and in 1537 was employed as an army surgeon. By 1552 he was gained such popularity that he became surgeon to the king; he served four French monarchs; Henry II, Francis II, Charles IX and Henry III.

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Paré 2

At the time Paré entered the army, surgeons treated gunshot wounds with boiling oil since such wounds were believed to be poisonous. On one occasion, when Paré's supply of oil ran out, he treated the wounds with a mixture of egg yolk, rose oil and turpentine. He found that the wounds he had treated with this mixture were healing better than those with the boiling oil. Sometimes later he reported his findings in La Method De Traicter les playes faites par les arquebuses et aultres bastons á feu(1545; the method of treating wounds made by harquebuses and other guns which was riddiculed because it was written in French rather than in Latin. Another of Paré's innovations that did not win immediate medical acceptance was his reintroduction of the trying of large arteries to replace the method of searing vessels with hot irons to check hemorrhaging during amputation.

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Paré 2

At the time Paré entered the army, surgeons treated gunshot wounds with boiling oil since such wounds were believed to be poisonous. On one occasion, when Paré's supply of oil ran out, he treated the wounds with a mixture of egg yolk, rose oil and turpentine. He found that the wounds he had treated with this mixture were healing better than those with the boiling oil. Sometimes later he reported his findings in La Method De Traicter les playes faites par les arquebuses et aultres bastons á feu(1545; the method of treating wounds made by harquebuses and other guns which was riddiculed because it was written in French rather than in Latin. Another of Paré's innovations that did not win immediate medical acceptance was his reintroduction of the trying of large arteries to replace the method of searing vessels with hot irons to check hemorrhaging during amputation.

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Paré 3

Unlike many surgeons of his time. Paré resorted to surgery only when he found it absolutely necessary. He was one of the first surgeons to discard the practice of castrating patients who required surgey for a hernia. He introduced the implantation of teeth,artificial limbs, and artifical eyes made of gold and silver. He invented many scientific instruments, popularized the use of the truss for hernia, and was the first to suggest syhillis as cause of aneurysm(swelling of blood vessels)

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William Harvey 1

William Harvey was born in Folkestone, Kent on 1 April 1578. His father was a merchant. Harvey was educated at King's College, Canterbury and then at Cambridge University. He then studied medicine at the University of Padua in Italy, where the scientist and surgeon Hieronymus Fabricius tutored him.

Fabricius, who was fascinated by anatomy recognised that the veins in the human body had one way valves, but was puzzled as to their function. It was Harvey who took the foundation of Fabricius's teaching  and went onto solve the riddle of what part the valves played in the circulation through the body.

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William Harvey 2

On his return from Italy in 1602, Harvey established himself as a physician. His career was helped by his marriage to Elizabeth Browne, daughter of Elizabeth I's physician, in 1604. In 1607 he became a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and , in 1609 was appointed physician to St Bartholomew's Hospital. In 1618 he became a physician to Elizabeth's successor James I and to James' son Charles when he became king. Both James and Charles took a close interest in and encouraged Harvey's research

Harvey's research was furthered through the dissection of animals. He first revealed his findings at the College of  Physicians in 1616 and in 1628 he published his theories in a book entitled 'Exercitatio Anatomica de Motu Cordis et Sanguinis in Animalibus'('An Anatomical Study of the Motion of the Heart and of the Blood in Animals') where he explained how the heart propelled the blood in a circular course through the body. His discovery was received with great interest in England, although it was greeted with some scepticism on the Continent.

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William Harvey 3

Harvey was also the first to suggest that humans and other mammals reproduced via the fertilisation of an egg by sperm. It took a further two centuries before a mammalian egg was finally observed , but nonetheless Harvey's theory won credibility during his lifetime.

Harvey retained a close relationship with the royal family through the English Civil War and witnesed the Battle of Edgehill. Thanks to Charles I he was, for a short time, warden of Merton College, Oxford (1645-1646). He died on 3 June 1657.

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John Hunter 1

John Hunter, born Feb 13 1728 long calderwood, Lanarkshire, died Oct 16 1793 London. Surgeon Founder of pathological anatomy in England and early advocate of investigation and experimentation. He also carried out many important studies and experiments in comparitive aspects of biology, anatomy, physiology and pathology.

Hunter never completed a course of studies in any university and as was common for surgeons during the 18th century he never atttempted to become a doctor of medicine. He went to London in 1748 to assist in the preparation of dissections for the course of anatomy taught by his brother William a famed obstetrician. For 11 winters he studied anatomy in his brothers dissecting rooms, and in the summers of 1749 and 1750 he learned sugery from William Chelsenden at Chelsea Hospital.

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John Hunter 2

In 1753 he was elected a master of anatomy at Surgeon’s Hall, responsible for reading lectures. He began his own private lectures on the principles and practice of surgery in the early 1770s. In addition, he had teaching duties from 1768 at St. George’s Hospital, to which he had been elected surgeon in 1758. In 1760 Hunter accepted a commission as an army surgeon. He returned to London in 1763, where he continued in private practice until his death. In 1776 he was named surgeon extraordinary to King George III.

Hunter not only made specific contributions of great importance in surgery but also attained for surgery the dignity of a scientific profession, basing its practice on a vast body of general biological principles. In an attempt to demonstrate that gonorrhoea and syphillis are manifestations of a single disease ,he inoculated a subject (sometimes said to have been himself) with pus from a person with gonorrhea. The subject developed symptoms of both diseases.

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Edward Jenner 1

Edward Jenner was born in Berkeley, Glouchestshire on 17 May 1749, the son of the local vicar. At the age of 14 he was apprenticed to a local surgeon and then trained in London. In 1772 he returned to Berkeley and spent the rest of his career as a doctor in his native town.

In 1796 he carried out his now famous experiment on eight year old James Phipps. Jenner inserted pus taken from a cowpox pustule and inserted it into an incision on the boys arm. He was testing his theory drawn from the folklaw of the countryside that milkmaids who suffered from he mild disease of cowpox never contracted smallpox one of the greatest killers of the period especially among children. Jenner subsequently proved that having been innoculated with cowpox Phipps was immune to smallpox.He submitted a paper to the Royal Society in 1797 describing his experiment, but was told that his ideas were too revolutionary and that he needed more proof. Undaunted, Jenner experimented on several other children, including his own 11-month-old son. In 1798, the results were finally published and Jenner coined the word vaccine from the Latin 'vacca' for cow.

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Edward Jenner 2

Jenner was widely ridiculed. Critics especially the clergy claimed it was repulsive and ungodly to innoculate someone with material from a diseased animal. A satirical cartoon of 1802 showed people who had been vaccinated sprouting cow's heads.But the obvious advantages of vaccination and the protection it provided won out,and vaccination soon became widepread. Jenner became famous and now spent much of his time researching and advising on developments in his vaccine. Jenner carried out research in a number of other areas of medicine and was also keen on fossil collecting and horticulture.He died on 26 January 1823.

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