Saturday, September 2, 2017

Cancer Treatment in the 19th Century

From Shannon Selin:
Although cancer was known to the ancients – the oldest known description of the disease is in an Egyptian papyrus from around 1600 B.C. – cancer treatment in the 19th century had not advanced much beyond the methods used during the time of Hippocrates (circa 460-370 BC). These consisted of diet, bloodletting and laxatives. Surgery was also used to treat cancer, but since general anaesthesia was not available until the 1840s, and antiseptics were not broadly introduced until the 1860s, operations were extremely painful and had a poor prognosis. Like today, cures for cancer were often proclaimed, each with their advocates and testimonial (Read more.)

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