Parts the writer wants you to consider:

She says that the other sections of the paper "aren't going to change, but I'd like you to look over these sections- - "

The introduction(pp.1-2) She asks, "does it reflect my thesis?"

Section on anatomy & diet (pp. 9- 11). She asks, "does this all flow & make sense to you?"

Section on Pneumonia (pp. 19- 20). She asks, "does this make sense to you? I've already told the reader what four humors are- - the Greeks thought that they were one cause of disease, even personality, in people. The Greeks developed an entire 'humoral system' to explain various diseases. My professor isn't a medical doctor, and I want to prove that the treatment for pneumonia was pretty advanced for its day. The Greeks just didn't call on spirits and rattle beads to cure somebody."


Greek and Roman Medicine

My paper will focus on the ancient Greek views and interpretations of diseases and other common ailments, including their symptoms and their cures. For example, I will deal with the existence of such devastating diseases as tuberculosis, or consumption, and leprosy, as well as simple ailments like the common cold. In addition, these occurrences will be examined in relation to ancient perceptions of anatomy and environment. I hope to find that the general body of knowledge of these two factors was advanced enough to be utilized successfully in the detection, observation and treatment of disease.

Science in ancient times was not the specific body of knowledge that we think of today. Many phenomena in the world remained unexplained. The ancients started their understanding with the only explanation that they could: simply that something higher up had started the process and was continuting to make the changes that went on in their lives.

However, as time went on, there were those who began to doubt the existence of supernatural beings as the sole and only explanation for the wonders and problems they perceived. They tried to find other, more tangible explanations for what occurred. These men were the first empiricists. They systematically ran tests and hypotheses in order to gain a concrete handle on their problems. As a result of these tests, they were able to break away from the unfounded religious explanations and move on to a higher form of reasoning--there are certain factors in the universe that unalterably produce certain results. These results are not the whim of some superior being, but rather are the result of the laws of nature.

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Before the art of medicine turned to science, the ancient Greeks believed that divine providence both struck down men with disease and cured them. The main healing god of the Greeks was Aesculapius. Most likely he was a real physician, and in later times the Greeks deified him and built temples to honor him.In myth, he was the son of either Coronis or Ascinoe and Apollo and fathered Hygeia, health, and Panacea, medicine. He was the student of the centaur Chiron, the being who myth has starting the first medical school at the foot of Mount Pelion. Under his tutor he studied botany and medicine and soon became a much sought after physician. He distinguished himself on the voyage of the Argonauts as the chief surgeon. There are two myths about his death. The first states that after bringing Hippolytus to life after he had been accidentally killed by Apollo, Zeus killed him out of jealousy for his skill. The second states that Pluto complained to Zeus that the human race was living too long under the skill of Aesculapius and this was keeping the population of Hades dowrt too low. As a result, Zeus slew Aesculapius with a thunderbolt (Evans 20- 21).

There are many divine sanctuaries of Aesculapius scattered throughout the world. . . .

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Dissection as a tool of medical research was not widely practiced amoncl the ancient Greeks. There were underlying religious complications and the issue of respect for the dead. Periodically, a body washed up on the shore of the sea might be circumspectly examined or aborted embryos or exposed children might be cut open, but even that was quite limited (Philips 41). However, there is some evidence that the ancients knew some rudimentary anatomy from the periodic experimentation with animals. The information gleaned from these experiments was considered analogous to human anatomy.

Places in Man in the Hippocratic Corpus gives a skeletal description that is on the whole accurate. There are a few anomalies, such as the absence of any mention of the floating ribs, or the fact that the number of vertebrae seems to change from one person to another.

They had a rather basic knowledge of the vascular system. The blood vessels are not distinguished between vein and artery and the same word is used indistinguishably (greek work here) The location and appearance of the heart was known, but the function was still in speculation. The main purpose of the heart was thought to have been to manufacture blood. While the pulse was recognized, the function of the heart as a pump still had not been discovered.

They had no concept of the nervous system as such, since the physiology of the period assigned the nervous function to the blood vessels (Philips 45). In The Heart in the Hippocratic

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Corpus, the lungs are thought of as a cooling agent for the hot heart. In the treatise on Diseases in the Corpus, knowledge of the function of the liver and gallbladder in storing bile is noted. The brain is treated as a sort of gland in the treatise Glands. However, in Sacred Disease, it is revealed that some physiological knowledge of the outer structure of the brain is known :"The brain of man, as in all other animals, is double, and a thin membrane divides it through the middle..."(lines 26- 28).

To the Greeks, diet was of the utmost importance. The food that one put into one's body was considered integral to the balance of health in the individual. In Ancient Medicine in the Corpus, it is written that earlier man ate what the animals ate, "Swallowing things which were raw, unmixed, and possessing great strength, they became exposed to strong pain and diseases, and to early deaths."(lines 21- 24). The writings seem to present a conclusion that man moved from a rough and insecure state of civilization while eating strong, indigestible foods to a civilization where diet is one of the necessary arts (Philips 28). Men should eat a balanced diet that would not interfere with the production of the humors and that would leave the body in a balanced state of health.

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Diet was also varied during the seasons to counteract the weather conditions. Regimen in Health in the Corpus gives a good guideline for the layman to follow in his diet. In the winter, one should eat much and drink little. The food should be bread and roasted meats and the drink should be wine that is as little diluted as possible. This is to counteract the cold and moist weather. In the spring, wine should be increased a little and diluted more. Food should come softer and the meat should be boiled This is to prepare for the summer when all food should be soft and boiled, with much diluted liquid taken. This regimen will counteract the hot, dry weather by making the body cold and soft. Autumn is another transition, wherein the meat should gradually be prepared drier and the wine should be decreased and not diluted as much. It can be seen that this theory of diet is directly linked with the humoral theory in relation to the seasons.

Those with certain physical characteristics should have special diets as well. Those that are soft and fleshy should stick to a drier diet since it is in their nature to be hot and moist. Those that are lean and sinewy should have a moister diet. Older people should also partake of a drier diet, since the body tends to become moist, soft and cold with age (Hippocrates Regimen in Health, Corpus).

Exercise is an important addition to the measure of diet. One without the other is basically useless. There were considered two types of exercise, natural and violent. Natural exercise consisted of such things as thinking, hearing, speaking and seeing. According to Hippocrates, even thought warms and dries a man. Exercise of the voice moves the soul and makes it warm and dry (Philips 77- 78). Violent exercises are those such as wrestling, walking and running. Running on a double track...

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Pneumonia is represented by the Greek word (Greek word here). In Diseases III in the Corpus, quite a detailed description of the diseases appears. The patient has weakness and fever and pain in the chest area. He expectorates sputum and the tongue becomes dark and infected. These symptoms last between fourteen and twenty- one days, during which the nature of the cough and expectorate gradually worsens. If after this phase the patient no longer coughs up sputum, then he is cured.

However, if he is still coughing, then the attention must be

turned to the next three days or so; if the cough stops then he will survive. If he still has not recovered, attention to the quality of the expectorate must examined again. If it is sweetish, then it is thought that the lung is suppurating and he will not recover for a year, unless he can bring up all the pus within forty days. If the expectorate is foul- - tasting, then the disease is mortal.

The main informant used in the diagnosis of the disease appears to have been the sputum that was expectorated during the coughing attacks. Again, the humoral theory of the body type holds true in determining the course of the disease. Since pneumonia is obviously caused by an imbalance of phlegm in the body, those that are by nature hot and moist generally have a more severe form of the disease, while those that are cold and dry have a less severe form.

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A description of the treatment of pneumonia follows the description in the Corpus. The head should be lightened to

prevent flux from settling into the chest. Diet should consist of gruels, at first sweet to wash away what has congealed in the chest, then the gruels should be rich to help the patient cough up sputum. If the patient is still expectorating with no end in sight, then expectorant medication should be administered on the sixth and eighth days - - "let these be equal amounts of white hellebore, thapsia5, and fresh squirting- cucumber juice."6 (Diseases III lines 135- 136). If this does not clear out the chest cavity, then there is no hope of survival unless the patient makes an effort himself.

"Alternatively, do the following, beginning on the first day: give a cheramys each of cuckoo- pint, dauke and stinging nettle, good pinches of mustard and rue, and silphium juice to the amount of a bean; mix these in sweetened vinegar and water, sieve, and give warm to the fasting patient. When he begins to cough up material that is clean, have him drink a cheramys of cukoo- pint, sesame, and shelled almonds in sweetened vinegar mixed with water; if you want to promote expectoration even more, mix root bark of the caper- plant in with these.7"

(Diseases III lines 143- 153)

The Hippocratic physician thought that tuberculosis, or consumption, as it was commonly translated, was considered a disease that resulted "from the coincidence of external factors (meteorological as well a:, earth- bound conditions - diet,

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

5 Thapsia garganica
6 The juice of Ecballium Elaterium
7cheramys - unit of measure equivalent to 22.8 ml.

cuckoo- pint - Azum italicum
dauke - perhaps Athamanta Cretensis
rue - Ruta graveolens
silphium - Ferula tingitana
caper- plant - - Capparis spinosa

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