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Introduction to episode 5 Building on the foundations laid by the 50 French Revolution. Tdevelopments in medicine. Medicine in the still had a long way to go.In the middle of the eighteenth century, change began,sick and wounded. In summary, medicine as it is known todayhe French Revolution (1789) caused not only politicaland social change, it dramatically accelerated 118 Netherlands, as in France, was practised by a motley company and this process was accelerated by the French Revolution. The of professionals, from university educated medicinae doctores, French state started to take responsibility for the health and barber-surgeons and apothecaries trained by the guilds, to welfare of its citizens. Obviously, wars with their many victims travelling masters, such as stone cutters, dental masters and who were asking for help played a prominent role in this oculists, but also a row of quacks and charlatans, like herbalists, development. Education and professional practice were exorcists and fever dispellers. However, quacks were often modernised. Academic medicine in France underwent dramatic barely distinguishable from qualified doctors, who did have innovations and was concentrated in the Écoles de Santé of some education but little medical knowledge and skills. Paris, Montpellier and Strasbourg. Innovations consisted of a Medicinae doctores were usually organised in collegia medica, total overhaul of the curriculum, with the introduction of while surgeons and pharmacists belonged to their respective subjects like anatomy, pathology, surgery and obstetrics but also guilds. These interest groups were often strongly inward chemistry and physics. Education also became more practice looking and not open to external influences. There was oriented and the distinction between medicine and surgery was cutthroat competition between the occupational groups. fading, and with it the difference between university educated The universities continued to teach classical Hippocratic and medicinae doctores and the surgeons, who used to be trained Galenic medicine, dating back two thousand years. The by their guild. Practical knowledge was to be gained in prevailing method was reading ancient books. There was little hospitals. It was there that medical skills were acquired. openness to scientific methods, new knowledge and practical Hospital medicine dates from those days. The new training. In so far as they were present, hospitals were hotbeds clinical medicine was characterised by detailed observation, of infections, prisons for the insane and places to die for the whether or not facilitated by instruments like the stethoscope, and systematic autopsies (dissection), which made it possible to identify connections between disorders of organs and observed symptoms. The use of statistics contributed to the reliability of medical knowledge, which no longer relied on one but on numerous observations. Hippocrates and Galenus had finally become outdated.


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