Medicine - Treatment, 1750-1900

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Improvements in Treatment

  • Herbal treatments still used but less access to plants thus more reliant on apothecaries
  • They continued to use folk remedies based on superstition, but pills would soon take over
  • Pills were made by hand until William Brockedon invented a machine in 1844 that standardised dosage and increased production speed
  • Apothecaries and quack doctors sold patent medicines, advertised as cures for everything. However, their ingredients (such as lard and arsenic) didn't work or caused harm
  • Money could be made from patent medicines, which encouraged growth of the pharmaceutical industry
  • Companies like Wellcome, Boots and Beecham financed chemical research to produce and sell their own brands

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