Wiseman, Richard, 1622?-1676 -- Friends and associates.
Prujean, Francis, 1597-1666 -- Friends and associates.
Needham, Walter, 1631?-1691? -- Friends and associates.
Physicians -- Professional relationships -- England -- London -- History -- 17th century.
The case histories used to illustrate Richard Wiseman's Several Chirurgicall Treatises (1676) reveal not only pathological and therapeutic detail but much information about the range of occupational relationships between Wiseman and the many London physicians with whom he collaborated on cases (more than forty are identified in an appendix to this article). His interaction with the two physicians with whom he had most to do, Francis Prujean and Walter Needham, exemplifies the extremes of such relationships. With Prujean, an older man and a leading figure in the College of Physicians, a formal and hierarchical relationship was observed, in which distinct occupational lines were maintained. In the case of Needham, a younger physician whose devotion to anatomical study was shared by Wiseman, a friendship developed between the two men that carried over into practice and tended to break down occupational and intellectual distinctions, so that Needham sometimes involved himself in Wiseman's surgical practice, and Wiseman initiated medical research later reported by Needham to the Royal Society.
Richard Wiseman, Walter Needham, Francis Prujean, surgery, case histories, professional relationships, Royal Society
Public health -- Massachusetts -- History -- 19th century.
Rabies -- Massachusetts -- History -- 19th century.
Massachusetts. General Court -- History -- 19th century.
Between 1876 and 1881 Massachusetts experienced an outbreak of human rabies (hydrophobia). The entire state—the Governor, the legislature, the State Board of Health, newspapers, and the citizenry and elected officials of every town and city—reacted to the disease. Central to the response was the Commonwealth's legislature—called the General Court. Through public hearings, their own debates, and the passage of legislation, it resolved widespread fear and anger, mediated conflicting concepts of disease, and promoted social solidarity in the face of an epidemic. This article first narrates the General Court's legislative actions; it then examines the conflicting understandings of disease causality; finally, it explores the social and political rituals the legislature drew upon to deal with this public health crisis. Arguing that public health legislation is simultaneously instrumental and symbolic, this article demonstrates that attention to both enriches the study of epidemics, historical and yet to come.
public health, legislation,
United States. Public Health Service -- History -- 20th century.
Tobacco use -- Health aspects -- United States.
Lungs -- Cancer -- United States -- Etiology.
During the 1950s, the United States Public Health Service prepared two statements on the link between smoking and lung cancer that have not been recognized by other historians. This article employs extended discussions of these two statements as vehicles to explore both internal developments at the federal health agency and larger questions surrounding the disciplinary emergence of chronic disease epidemiology. The primary cast of characters includes Surgeons General Leonard A. Scheele and Leroy E. Burney, Lewis C. Robbins (a lower-ranking Public Health Service officer, who had chief responsibility for the agency's smoking-related programs from 1958 through 1962 and who left behind a daily professional diary), and Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) editor John H. Talbott. These men, and others, are seen grappling (at varying levels of engagement) with the appearance of what we now recognize as a profoundly different way of understanding chronic disease causation, which centers on survey-taking and statistical analysis of risk factors.
cancer, chronic disease,
United States Public Health Service
Schizophrenia -- Treatment -- United States -- History -- 20th century.
Insulin shock therapy -- History -- 20th century.
Most historians of psychiatry regard insulin coma therapy (ICT) either as an embarrassing stumble on the path to modern biological psychiatry or as one member of a long line of somatic therapies used to treat mental illness in the mid-twentieth century. This article explores the ICT era, roughly 1933–60, as a key moment in the development of American psychiatry. Developed only ten years after insulin had been embraced as a "miracle drug" for the treatment of diabetes, ICT was perceived by psychiatrists as a means of bringing their field closer to mainstream medicine, particularly to neurology. In addition, the story of ICT reveals how a treatment never quite proven on paper was unquestionably efficacious in the local world in
which it was performed.
An institutionally-based treatment, ICT was administered in a specific area of the mental hospital deemed the insulin unit, a room with its own staff, practices, and attitudes toward mental illness. There, psychiatrists often experienced wondrous recoveries of individual, formerly intractable patients. These intense personal experiences allowed psychiatrists to feel truly efficacious, enabling them to reinvent themselves as medical doctors rather than behavioral and disciplinary supervisors. The confidence they derived from this capacity, along with the operating room-like setting of the insulin unit, the unit's specialized staffing and group bond, and the availability of both risk-assessment tests and a medley of treatments that countered side effects and complications, allowed ICT to be understood as an efficacious treatment for schizophrenia within the local world in which it was administered.
Insulin coma therapy, ICT,