Surgery And Anatomy


Pre Historic and Ancient S+A - up till 250BC

In the pre historic times, the only surgery they had was triphining. It was used to get rid of evil spirits when a person had epilepsy or a head ache. In the pre historic times, there was only irrational ideas, no knowledge at all on the anatomy or succesful surgery. 

In ancient Egypt, things slightly developed. Intruments were made for specific jobs in surgery. The doctors could fix broken bones and joints and were good at applying bandages to wounds. However, the surgery did not venture inside the body.

In ancient Greece, surgery continued to be limited outside the body. The doctors and surgeons were very good at fixing joints and broken bones and other practical surgeries. 

In 460BC Hippocrates started clinical observation. 

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Roman S+A - 250 BC - 500 AD

In 130AD Galen disected pigs and based the human anatomy and bloody system on a pigs. This was because it was banned to disect humans. Galen recorded his discroveries about the anatomy and he was thought to be right for over 1000 years. 

In the Roman period, it was the first period that they tried to make discoveries and develop the understanding of anatomy. Due the the ban on disecting humans they were restricted to surgery outside the body.

Also the ideas were passed on for 1000 years and there were many books recorded in the Roman period. 

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Medieval S+A - 600 AD - 1500 AD

No one was challegning Galen so his ideas were paassed on. 

In the Medieval time surgery did develop. Surgery was left to the barber surgeons and not the doctors. Due to the constant, frequent war fare, their skills were in high demand, this meant that new instruments were regularly invented. 

However, surgeons didnt realise the importance of cleanliness in surgery, so many mothers died after birth and many surgeries left the patient infected. Remeber germ theory didnt come around until the late 1800s. There is also evidence of internal surgery on the bladder. 

Overall, in this period, there was some progression. Not necessarily on understanding but there was advances in surgery. There was still irational ideas and superstitiuos theories of how to cure people instead of surgery. 

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Renaissance S+A - 1500 - 1750

Versaluis, in 1543, stole hung corpses and took them home where he would boil the bones and map the skeleton back together. He then recorded and drew the skeleton in books and eventually they were published.  He was the first person to successfully challenge Galen, which then inspired others to do the same. Soon afterwards, Columbo and Fabricus in 1559 and 1579, discovered that there were valves and that blood circulated around the body. 

In 1536, a barber surgeon, Pare, was asked to work on the battlefield to cure wounds on injured soldiers. He was horrified by the cautery system they used with hot oil. He discovered an ointment which consisted of yolk and herbs which helped blood clot and reduced pain.

Also Harvey, in 1628, discovered that blood flowed one way and the heart acted as a pump. This again proved one of Galenas theories wrong which then stimulated more discoveries.  

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Surgery in the Industrial world - 1750 - 1900

Anaesthetics: In 1799, Davy discovered laughing gas as an anaesthetic. Then in 1846, Morton and Warren discovered a substance called ether. Ether was highly flammable and it was hard to get the dosage right, if the dosage was wrong, it could be fatal. In 1847, Simpson discovered cholorform which was less dangerous then ether. However, it made surgeons over confident so they operated too much at times. Dr snow got the dosage right and used an inhaler to give it to the patient. This made it more effective and and less dangerous.

Antiseptics: Before 1865, surgery was dirty and infectious. In 1861, the germ theory came along and Lister used the germ theory to introduce Carbolic spray. This stopped infections in surgery. He combined Semelweisses theory with Pasteurs and this decreased death rates after surgery dramatically. However, it was unpleasent and therefore made surgery difficult. 

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Surgery in the 20th century - 1900 - 2000

Surgery developed further and it was safer and cleaner. Developments in science and technology made this possible. For example x rays and radiation therapy alongside key hole surgery.

In 1953, Watson and Crick discovered DNA and won the nobel prize. 

In 1967, Barnard peformed the first succesful heart transplant. The patient lived for 18 days with the new heart. 

Due to WW1 and WW2, plastic surgery developed and so did blood transfusion due to the new weaponary and therefore the new wounds. Due to these new injuries, doctors had to come up with new inventions and methods. 

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Key dates in S+A - 130 AD - 1799

130AD - Galen disected a pig and based human anatomy on it.

1536 - Pare invented his ligature and proved that cautery wasnt working

1543 - Versalius correctly challenged Galen and mapped out the skeleton

1559 - Columbo found that blood circulated around the body - proved Galen wrong

1579 - Farbicrus proved Galens theory wrong again as he discovered that there were valves

1628 - Harvey used Fabricus' idea to explain how the heart worked correctly

1799 - Davy discovered laughing gas

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Key dates in S+A - 1799 - 2000

1845 - Semmelweiss couldnt provide evidence for his discovery about hand washing

1846 - Morton and Warren discovered ether as an anaesthetic

1847- Simpson discovered cholorform which was much better than ether

1861 - Pasteurs germ theory

1865 - Lister discovered carbolic spray, an  effective antiseptic

1900 - Landsteiner discovered differant blood groups

1953 - Watson and Crick found DNA

1967 - Banard peformed the first succesfull heart transplant

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