Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Pioneers in Medicine: From the Classical World to Today

Academic journal article The Science Teacher

Pioneers in Medicine: From the Classical World to Today

Article excerpt

By Sherman Hollar. $32.90. 112 pp. Rosen Publishing Group, Inc. New York, NY. 2013. ISBN: 9781615306695.

In this concise compendium, readers are introduced to 42 notable men and women--philosophers, scientists, physicians, teachers, nurses, and inventors--who advanced medicine and health care. The book presents a historical timeline that spans from the Classical Era of Ancient Greece and Rome to the 21st century and crosses many cultures and countries.

Through fascinating biographical sketches of these pioneers, the author takes readers on a journey through their early years, educational experiences, and trials and tribulations as they pursued their lifelong ambitions. For many years, religion and superstitions thwarted the progress of medicine. Readers will be awed as they learn of the cowpox inoculation performed by Edward Jenner. Can you imagine his fate if the experiment had failed? These courageous men and women were indeed risk takers. In spite of obstacles, they had the conviction, dedication, and tenacity to persevere. During the last two centuries, vaccinations have eradicated many diseases globally.

The book offers succinct descriptions of achievements in the fields of anatomy, physiology, chemistry, pathology, psychology, genetics, and microbiology. The author addresses terminal illness, neurological disorders, pandemics, and birth control. One of the major tools that helped to advance the study of medicine was the microscope. It is noted that the Germ Theory of Disease credited to Louis Pasteur and Robert Koch was perhaps one of the major advancements in medicine. This led to improved methods of sanitation and antiseptic surgical methods. …

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