January 27, 2012

Ancient Egypt and Practise of Medicine

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ancient Egyptian medicine
Ancient Egyptian medicine in Ancient Egypt

Medicine from the ancient Egyptians, some of the oldest documented. From the beginnings of civilization in the century, 33 before the birth (c) even went the Persian invasion of 525 BC, the Egyptian medical practice without a change to a large extent and was very advanced for its time, including the operation simple non-invasive, and the development of bone and a wide range of drugs. Egyptian thought later in the affected medical traditions, including the Greeks.


Nutrition in Ancient Egypt

Basically do not need when considering the validity of any nutrition education will be discussed. The ancient Egyptians aware of the importance of diet. This was the reason for the suspension of Egypt's great fertile land for food production never a major issue although of course it does not matter how a multitude of landless and land poor, famine still exists. The major crops for most of the history of the ancient Egyptian emmer wheat and barley. Consumed in the form of loaves produced in a variety of types of bread and fermentation through, with a lot of yeast to enrich the nutritional value of the product, can be a crop farmers in support of an estimated twenty adults. Barley was also used in beer. Was grown on a large scale vegetables and fruits of many kinds. The production of oil from the flax plant and there was a limited selection of spices and herbs. And meat (sheep, goats, pigs and wild animals) regularly available at least consumption of the upper layers and fish on a large scale and in spite of evidence of the ban during certain periods against certain types of animal products; Herodotus wrote of the pig as' unclean. "And recorded presentations to the King Unas (c. 2494-2345 BC), as

"... The milk, and three kinds of beer, and five types of wine, and ten loaves, and four of the bread and cakes four years of meat, cuts of different joints, barbecue, spleen, and limbs, and breast cancer, quail, geese, pigeons, figs, ten other fruits, and three types of corn, barley, written, and five types of oil, and fresh plants ... "

It is clear that the Egyptian diet was not required for the upper classes, and that even in the lower classes may have been some selection (Nunn, 2002).


Practices Medicine in Ancient Egypt

In addition, medical knowledge in ancient Egypt an excellent reputation, and the rulers of other empires would ask the Egyptian Pharaoh to send them their best doctor to treat their loved ones. The Egyptians had some knowledge of human anatomy. For example, in the process of mummification, classic, and I knew how to mummifiers the introduction and implementation of long-hooked through the nose, breaking the thin bone of the brain case and the removal of the brain. They must also have had a general idea of the site in the body cavity of the internal organs, which removed through a small incision in the left thigh. However, what if you pass this knowledge to the practitioners of medicine is not known and seems to have any impact on the medical theories.

Egyptian doctors were aware of the presence of pulse and a link between pulse and heart. Author of the Smith Papyrus, even if a vague idea of the system of the heart, although not from the circulation, and was unable, or believes that is important to distinguish between blood vessels, tendons and nerves. They developed their theory of "channels" that carry air, water and blood to the body through the measurement on the River Nile, and if it becomes blocked, and became the crops healthy and it applies this principle to the body: if the person was fine, they use laxatives to release " channels ".

Too few effective medical practices, such as many surgical procedures contained in the Edwin Smith papyrus. Often, the advice of doctors to stay healthy for washing and shaving the body, including in the context of weapons, and this may lead to the prevention of infection. They also advised patients to take care of their diet, avoid foods such as raw fish or other animals that are unclean.

The many practices are ineffective or harmful. Michael D. Parkins says that 72% of 260 prescriptions in Papyrus Hearst has no elements of treatment are known, and many of the dung animal that contains products from fermentation and rot, and some even have healing properties, but also bacteria pose a serious threat of infection.



Healers and doctors in Ancient Egypt

The ancient Egyptian word for doctor is "wabau". This title has a long history. The earliest recorded physician in the world, Hesy-Ra, practiced in ancient Egypt. He was “Chief of Dentists and Physicians” to King Djoser, who ruled in the 27th century BC. The lady Peseshet (2400 BC) may be the first recorded female doctor: she was possibly the mother of Akhethotep, and on a stela dedicated to her in his tomb she is referred to as imy-r swnwt, which has been translated as “Lady Overseer of the Lady Physicians” (swnwt is the feminine of swnw).

There were many ranks and specializations in the field of medicine. Royalty employed their own swnw, even their own specialists. There were inspectors of doctors, overseers and chief doctors. Known ancient Egyptian specialists are ophthalmologist, gastroenterologist, proctologist, dentist, "doctor who supervises butchers" and an unspecified "inspector of liquids". The ancient Egyptian term for proctologist, neru phuyt, literally translates as "shepherd of the anus".

Institutions, so called Houses of Life, are known to have been established in ancient Egypt since the 1st Dynasty and may have had medical functions, being at times associated in inscriptions with physicians, such as Peftauawyneit and Wedjahorresnet living in the middle of the first millennium BC. By the time of the 19th Dynasty their employees enjoyed such benefits as medical insurance, pensions and sick leave.


Dentistry in Ancient Egypt

The dental field is important, as it is independent of the profession of the third millennium BC in the early, although it may not be never prominent. The diet of the Egyptian abrasion is high (such as sand left over from grinding grain) and the condition of their teeth were very poor, despite the fact that archaeologists have noted a steady decline in the severity of the occurrence of teeth worn throughout the 4000 BC to 1000 AD, probably because of improved techniques grain grinding. Egyptians still not all groups of teeth in very poor countries. Dental disease can even be fatal, such as Djedmaatesankh, a musician of Thebes, who died at the age of thirty-wide dental disease and infected a large bag. The dental infection and the best hope for people can be the rapid loss of teeth affected. On instructions from Ankhsheshonq contains the statement "there is still no teeth rotting remains in place." The lack of records and document speed up this process has not been found on the appropriate tools to extract the tooth, and although some of the remains show a sign of forced removal of teeth. Found on the teeth of an alternative, although it is not clear whether it is; only a post-mortem may be cosmetic. In the treatment of severe pain by opium.


Magic and religion in Ancient Egypt

In addition, magic and religion is an integral part of everyday life in ancient Egypt. It is believed that the evil gods and demons to be responsible for many diseases, and often involve an element of the supernatural treatments, such as the start of treatment with an appeal to the deity. There does not seem that a clear distinction between what is at present to be seen in a very distinct callings of priest and doctor. Healers and many of them priests of Sekhmet often used incantations and magic as part of treatment.

May have resulted from a widespread belief in magic and religion in the placebo effect is strong, that is, have contributed to the health of the perceived effectiveness of treatment. The effect of magic to focus on the choice of treatments or components for them. Has been selected components that appear in some cases because they were derived from plant, animal or substance that the properties that match in some way to the symptoms of the patient. This is known as the principle of similibus simila ("similar with similar") found throughout the history of medicine to the modern practice of homeopathy. Thus, ostrich eggs are included in the treatment of fracture of the skull, and can be used as an amulet depicts the hedgehog against baldness.

The amulets are generally very popular, being worn for many magical purposes. Classified as amulets and health-related homeopoetic, phylactic and theophoric. Homeopoetic amulets portray an animal or part of the animal, and worn by hopes for positive attributes such as strength or speed. Phylactic amulets protected against the harmful gods and demons. And is often used on the famous Eye of Horus amulet phylactic. Represent amulets Theophoric Egyptian gods, one of Isis and a belt was intended to stem the flow of blood in abortion. In addition, often made of bone, and hanging from a leather belt.


Surgery in Ancient Egypt

The surgery is a common practice among doctors for the treatment of physical injuries. Egyptian doctors admitted that three categories of injuries; diseases can be treated, stabbing, and non-treatment. Disease can be treated quickly, the surgeons to the right. These diseases were stabbed the victim can survive without treatment and may, therefore, assumed to be patients in this category was observed Oama they are alive and can be attempts to reform the surgery. Have included surgical instruments and detection of archaeological sites in knives, hooks, and exercises, and the tongs, pliers, and standards, and spoons, saws and vase with burning incense.

And male circumcision was the rule, as mentioned Herodotus in his history. Though rarely mentioned as a performance of procedure, has been observed in many cases, nature is circumcised from other cultures, and was noted in many instances are not circumcised nature of the Liberian military campaigns and the uncircumcised penis brought back as trophies, which suggests the grandmother. Although other records describing the start of the religious orders they involve the circumcision, which means that this practice is private and not on a large scale. Imaging only known from this action, in a tomb of a physician, and the burial place of Tutankhamun - Mahor in Saqquarra, shows adolescents or adults, not children. Has practiced female genital mutilation, although one reference to it in ancient texts may be a misunderstanding.

Also used artificial limbs, such as artificial fingers and eyeballs,; usually, they served a little more than decorative purposes. In preparation for burial, will be replaced with body parts missing (but this does not appear as if they were useful, or even affixed) before his death.

Given the widespread use of embalming practices of surgery, and autopsy of Egyptian religious practice extensive knowledge of the shape of the body, and even great understanding of the functions of the device. (University of Minnesota). The function of most major organs correctly, it is assumed, for example, was thinking correctly in the blood to be a vital means of transpiration and waste, not far from their actual roles in carrying oxygen and remove carbon dioxide with the exception of the heart and was transferred the functions of the brain.


Sources of information

Until the 19th century, the primary sources of information on ancient Egyptian medicine in the later literature in antiquity. Homer (c) 800 BC observed in the Odyssey: "In Egypt, men are more skilled in medicine than any kind of rights" and "Egyptians were skilled in medicine more than any other art," the Greek Herodotus visited Egypt about 440 historian, wrote BC , and a wide range of medical practices of his remarks. Pliny the Elder also wrote favorably of them in a historical review. Studied Hippocrates ("father of medicine"), Herophilos, Erasistratus and Galen later in the temple of Amenhotep, and acknowledged the contribution of medicine of the ancient Egyptian and Greek medicine.

In 1822, and the translation of the Rosetta Stone finally allowed translation of the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions and papyri, including many of the issues relevant medical (Egyptian medical papyri). Led the interest rate resulting in Egyptology in the 19th century to the discovery of several extensive collections of ancient documents, including the Papyrus Ebers, the Papyrus Edwin Smith and Papyrus Hearst, and Papyrus medical in London and others dating back as far as 3000 BC. The Edwin Smith Papyrus is a book about the details of the surgery and anatomical observations and "screening, diagnosis, treatment and diagnosis" of many diseases. [2] was probably written around 1,600 BC, but is a copy of the texts in the earlier kit. Medical information at the early dates from 3000 BC. [3] Imhotep 3 strain in the credit as a writer of the original papyrus, and the founder of ancient Egyptian medicine. The surgery as soon as known in Egypt, 2,750 BC.

(C) The Ebers Papyrus 1550 BC is full of incantations and foul applications meant to stay away disease-causing demons, and also includes 877 medical prescriptions. [4] may also contain the earliest documented awareness of the tumors, and if it is not understood by the ancient medical terminology has been interpreted correctly. Other information comes from the images that often adorn the walls of Egyptian tombs and the translation of the accompanying literature. Progress in modern medical technology also contributed to the understanding of ancient Egyptian medicine. The Paleopathologists able to use X-rays and CT scans at a later time to view the bones and organs of mummies. Allows electron microscopes, mass spectrometry techniques and forensic scientists of various profiles of the unique health situation in Egypt since 4000 years.

Other documents such as the Edwin Smith Papyrus (1550 BC), the Hearst Papyrus (1450 BC), and Berlin Papyrus (1200 BC) also provides valuable information on ancient Egyptian medicine. Said Edwin Smith papyrus, for example, research methods, and to make the diagnosis of the patient and determine treatment. It is therefore serve as a guide learning. Treatment consists of diseases are made of materials of animal and vegetable or fruit or any other metal.


ancient Egyptian medicine papyrus

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