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The History of Human Anatomy

A look at the beginning research in the field of human anatomy, physiology and medicines.

Rebecca Beswick

on 18 April 2011

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Transcript of The History of Human Anatomy

History of Human Anatomy Created By: Becca Beswick The origins of anatomy go all the way back to
prehistoric times. Paleolithic cave paintings suggest
that primitive hunters already knew about the location of vital organs such as the heart and liver. In ancient Egypt, they were learning more and more about human anatomy through ritual embalming processes. From The Beginning The End external jugular v. subclavian v. left brachiocephalic v. superior vena cava hepatic v. inferior vena cava gonadal v. internal iliac v. ascending lumbar v. great saphenous v. femoral v. radial v. renal v. ulnar v. common iliac v. external iliac v. median cubital v. basilic v. brachial v. cephalic v. axillary v. right brachiocephalic v. popliteal v. facial v. temporal v. posterior tibial v. small saphenous v. anterior tibial v. Anatomy In Art Ancient scholars and early Muslim scientists learned about the body's inner workings through studying cadavers and animals. However, a lot was based on guesswork and immagination, as this 13th-century drawing of flattened-out blood vessels shows. During the Renaissance, Italian anatomists cut up cadavers to identify major organs, and depictions of the human body became more realistic. In the 1500s, Leonardo da Vinci dissected over 30 corpses to create very accurate drawings. In the 1530s, Belgian-born anatomist Andreas Vesalius was given access to the bodies of executed criminals. In 1543, with the help of talented artists, he published a book called 'On the Fabric of the Human Body'. It revealed human anatomy in incredible detail. In 1747, German anatomist Bernhard Siegfried Albinus published the landmark book 'Tables of the Skeleton and Muscles of the Human Body'. The images of dissected humans were posed against bizarre backgrounds. Attending a dissection became a must do in the 1600s and 1700s. Some cities even charged admission to see a dead body being cut open. Facinated observers are captured here in Rembrandt's painting 'The Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Nicolaes Tulp'. There were not always enough cadavers to go around, so intricate wax models were made to help anatomy students learn. They showed body structures in coomplex and realistic ways. New Printing techniques in the 1800s meant that high quality anatomy images could be widely reproduced. Classic tomes liek the complete 'Treatise of the Anatomy of Man' (1831-1854) provided a comprehensive guide to every part of the body. Dissections were no longer open to the public, but held only in medical schools. The body as art In recent times, MRI scans and computer imagery enable us to appreciate and understand the art of the human body as never before. German doctor Gunther von Hagens uses actual human bodies as art in his Body Worlds exhibitions. Using a technique called plastination, the liquids and fats in a cadaver are replaced with plastic, so the body does not smell or decay and is pliable enough to pose. It was once the unbelievable stuff of science fiction, but on December 3rd, 1967, South African heart surgeon Christiaan Barnard made the first heart transplant. He transplanted the heart of a car accident victim into a 59 year old man with an incurable heart disease. The man survived the surgery but died 19 days later due to pneumonia. By the middle of the 1800s, scientists had developed many theories about how the brain worked. But due to limits in technology, their ideas could not be tested. Scientific proof that each region of the brain had a different function was confirmed by the strange behavior of two patients suffering from brain damage. One man was injured with a steel rod driven straight through his head. A doctor cleaned the bloody wound, pressed the skull bones back in place, and wrapped a bandage around the victim's head. He had no loss of speech or movement. The next spring the same doctor examined the patient to discover that his personality had changed. The man swore much more, insulted his friends, and was very selfish. Dr. John Harlow wrote about this case and proved that the front of the brain controls personality. A second man checked in to a hospital in Paris around ten years later. He had at one time been very intelligent and well spoken. During some incident, he had lost the power of speech and replied to every question with the single word: tan. By complete coincidence, the man lost movement in his right arm and leg. Dr Paul Broca investigated this and assumed that his theory of the frontal lobes of the brain controlling speech to be true. After the patient had passed away, Broca performed and autopsy to find a dark lesion on the left frontal lobe. This was the first direct link between a part of the brain and a body function. This area of the brain is now named after Broca. 420 B.C. Hugely influential Greek physician Hippocrates establishes medicine as a distinct discipline, dependent on observation and diagnosis, moving it away from magic and myth. 190 A.D. Claudius Galen describes, quite wrongly, the body's anatomy and workings. His views remain unchallenged for 1,500 years. 1000 Persian physician Avecenna publishes 'Canon of Medicine' a book that combines Islamic medicine with Galen's ideas, and influences medicine for centuries. 1628 An English physician named William Harvey published a book called 'On the Motion of the Heart and Blood'. In it he explained how blood is pumped by the heart, through arteries and veins, along a singular circular route. He had discoverd circulation.
This drawing depicts how he proved the existence of valves within veins. Today, doctors may request a sample of your urine to help diagnose certain disorders. In earlier times, doctors would perform a taste test. Sweet tasting urine, for example, would indicate diabetes. Today, doctors prefer to dip a strip of special color changing paper into the urine. 1954 The first major organ transplant was a kidney. Because we have two of them and can live with just one, the kidney was a perfect starting point for transplant discoveries. The first successful kidney transplant was performed in Boston, Massachusetts. The understanding of the body's immune defense on foreign objects helped this transplant be successful. Because the donor and organ recipient were twin brothers, the new kidney had the same make up and did not seem foreign in its new body. Not every disease and ailment could be treated with medicine. Surgery was sometimes the only option. Today, surgical procedures take place in sterile conditions, and the patient is usually kept unconscious throughout the operation. If you were in need of surgery before the mid 1800s, however, you could expect extreme pain, surgeons caked in blood of previous patients, and an audience oohing and ahhing at the entire spectacle. Since there was no anesthetic, the patient was conscious and assistants were required to hold the patient down while surgeons cut into them. Even if the patient did survive the surgery, a bacterial infection in the would could kill him soon afterward. It was not until the 1860s that British doctor Joseph Lister recognizes the importance of sterile conditions in operating rooms. 1545 A pioneer of battlefield medicine, French surgeon Ambroise Pare publishes 'The Method of Treating Wounds' which describes new treatments, such as an ointment made of egg yolk and roses rather than the traditional wound remedy of boiling oil. 1614 Italian physician Santorio Santorio publishes a study of his own bodily functions after spending 30 years in a "weighing chair" measuring what went in and what came out. 1667 The first ever blood transfusion, from a sheep to a student named Arthur Coga, is carried out by English physician Richard Lower. Amazingly, Coga survived. Bibliography "A Science Odyssey: People and Discoveries: First Successful Kidney Transplant Performed." PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. Web. 14 Apr. 2011. Buller, Laura, Julie Ferris, and Niki Foreman. Open Me up. New York: DK, 2009. Print Tuberculosis, Encyclopedia Britannica, 11th ed. "Rudy's List of Archaic Medical Terms", English Glossary of Archaic Medical Terms, Diseases and Causes of Death. 9 October 2006. 1674-1677 Dutch amateur microscopist and textile merchant Anton van Leeuwenhoek observes red blood cells, sperm, and bacteria for the first time using a homemade microscope. 1792 Austrian doctor Franz Gall develops his flawed theory of phrenology, which involves feeling the shape of the head to determine different aspects of someone's personality. 1796 English doctor Edward Jenner carries out the first vaccination against an infectious disease, protecting a young boy from smallpox. Consumption In the past, many illnesses had mythical names. Tuberculosis had many, including being called consumption, because it seemed to consume people from within, with a bloody cough, fever, pallor, and long relentless wasting. Before the Industrial Revolution, tuberculosis was sometimes regarded as vampirism. When one member of a family died from it, the other members that were infected would lose their health slowly. Folklore held that this was caused by the original victim draining the life from the other family members. Furthermore, people who had TB exhibited symptoms similar to what people considered to be vampire traits. People with TB often have symptoms such as red, swollen eyes (which also creates a sensitivity to bright light), pale skin, extremely low body heat, a weak heart and coughing blood, suggesting the idea that the only way for the afflicted to replenish this loss of blood was by sucking blood. Ancient Remedies Around the world, a range of different cures and treatments were used. Some were based of traditional old wives' tales, while others came backed with medical opinions of the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, & Romans. Considered good science at the time, many of them now seem weird and wacky. Others, like trepanning and cupping, are still occasionally used today. 1853-1856 The work of Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole during the Crimean War changes how wounded soldiers are nursed and leads to the establishment of modern nursing. 1928 British doctor and bacteriologist Alexander Fleming discovers penicillin, the first antibiotic drug, when he notices a substance released by mold-killing bacteria. 1901 Austrian-American doctor Karl Landsteiner's team identifies blood types- later called A, B, AB, and O - enabling safe blood transfusions to take place. 1972 Computerized axial tomography (CAT) scanning, which uses X-rays and computers to produce images of living tissues and organs as "slices" through the body, is used for the first time. 1978 On July 26th, Louise Brown- the world's first test tube baby- is born in Britain. She was conceived by in vitro fertilization (IVF) nine months earlier in a lab. 1980 Surgeons start using "keyhole" surgery to look inside the body and perform operations through tiny openings rather than large incisions. 2003 Started in 1990, the Human Genome Project completes its goal of identifying the DNA sequence of a full set of human chromosomes and shows that humans have fewer than 25,000 genes. 1816 French doctor Rene Laennec invents the stethoscope. Doctors could now listen to internal happenings such as heart beats and lung movements. Porter, R. (1997). The Greatest Benefit to Mankind: A Medical History of Humanity from Antiquity to the Present. Harper Collins Mazzio, C. (1997). The Body in Parts: Discourses and Anatomies in Early Modern Europe. Routledge. Human anatomy is the science concerned with the structure and functions of the human body. Modern medicine owes a debt to all anatomists and physicians of the past. Making mistakes and challenging long held ideas are all a part of how we make new discoveries. There's still more to learn though, and today's doctors are working to make even more advances in medicine. Trepanning Bloodletting Cupping Hydrotherapy is the withdrawal of often considerable quantities of blood. This practice was based on Hippocrates' theory of Humorism. It was the most common medical practice performed by doctors up to the 19th century- almost 2,000 years. is a surgical procedure in which a hole is drilled or scraped into the skull in order to relieve intracranial diseases. Evidence indicates that ancient cultures believed the practice would cure epileptic seizures, migranes, and mental disorders. is an ancient healing technique of over 3,000 years. Small glass cups are heated and placed on the skin. As they cool, the skin is sucked up inside. It was believed this drew out poisonous substances from the body. It was also used for muscle stiffness, back pain, and coughs. has been used by many different ancient civilizations. Many ancient medical texts discuss the various applications that both drinking and soaking in heated or cooled water provide cures for various ailments. Curious Cures An Egyptian cure for large wounds was to apply the patient's own excrement mixed with fresh milk to the wound. This was believed to make it heal faster. Urine was also used for ancient antibacterial purposes. They believed both helped wounds heal faster.
An ancient cure for cataracts called for tortoise brain to be mixed with honey and placed on the eye while a prayer was said. Not true for tortoise brain, honey has been proven to a natural antibiotic by modern medical labs. It reduces inflammation and speeds the healing process.
At one time, the bark and leaves of a willow tree were instructed to be eaten to relieve pain and fever. Much later, a main chemical found in willow tree leaves would be isolated and used in the creation of Bayer Aspirin.
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