8 medical Discoveries great that you saved the lives of millions of people

The medicine was not always as we are accustomed to seeing in her. Just a couple of hundreds of years, pneumonia or appendicitis were something fatal, and the surgeons had no idea that they should wash their hands before an operation, and did not pay attention to the heart-rending cries of the patients (at that time there was no anesthesia). But there are geniuses who, in spite of the sneers of his colleagues, made amazing discoveries.

Great.guru you will have about the greatest medical advances that saved millions of lives and changed the old ideas about the world.

1. Anesthesia

Before the invention of anesthesia, all the operations were monstrously painful, or very fast. The Russian surgeon Nikolai Pirogov performed an amputation in 3 minutes, otherwise the patients die of shock.

The lack of a anesthesia efficient hindered the development of surgery: abdominal operations were not an option. Of course, the doctors were experimenting with infusions of poppy or mandrake, and even did enemas of tobacco. But none of these remedies succeeded in removing the pain completely and, in addition, it could be dangerous to the health of the patients.

Everything changed when the dentist american, William Morton, decided to use as anesthesia ethyl ether. And what motivated him to make his discovery was the lack of money: for fear of the painful procedures, the patients preferred to avoid going to the dentist. The doctor addressed the development of a treatment method that is responsible, experienced with animals, and he treated his closest friends and newly introduced drug to the public when he was convinced of their safety.

On October 16, 1846 may be regarded as the official birthday of the anesthesia. In the presence of a great crowd of people, Morton performed an operation to remove a tumor maxillary. The patient remained asleep during the entire procedure, and this was the triumph of the doctor.

2. Aseptic and antiseptic

Until the NINETEENTH century, surgeons or even would happen to the idea of washing hands before an operation or childbirth. Does the disinfecting? They didn’t know anything about that. It was normal to use a single surgical instrument in a dozen patients. As a result, the majority of the operations ended up with suppuration and gangrene, and birthing, with septicemia. The mortality after the intervention of the surgeons was enormous.

The Hungarian physician Ignaz Semmelweis was the first to compel his subordinates to wash their hands with a disinfectant solution of bleach. The innovation of Semmelweis reduced to 7 times the mortality among mothers giving birth. However, the discovery was not valued in the life of a doctor: the scientific community considered his ideas delusional. Semmelweis died in a mental hospital, where he was interned by their colleagues.

A little later, the English Joseph Lister demonstrated the need to sterilize instruments and disinfect wounds. The discoveries of Semmelweis and Lister saved millions of lives.

3. X-rays

Before the discovery of X-rays, the surgeons had to re-break the bones of the patients if they joined evil. These operations were painful and many times not brought to a full recovery.

Everything changed with the accidental discovery of Wilhelm Röntgen. The physicist, was conducting experiments with cathode ray tubes, and noticed that a radiation unknown emanating from the place of the collision of the rays. It turned out that this radiation (Röntgen called them X-rays) could penetrate some materials that are opaque. The first x-rays were taken by the physicist in his study: the image of the hand of Dr. Köllicker, a friend of Röntgen, spread all over the world in a short time. This event caused excitement in the scientific community, and horrified the common people: “the people took a long time to get used to this kind of images.

Representatives of many industrial enterprises have asked repeatedly to Röntgen sell his invention, but the scientist didn’t even patented. And it was thanks to this accessibility of the technology that began the rapid development of related industries: oncology, pulmonology, radiology and many others.

4. Antibiotics

A world without antibiotics was terribly dangerous: any infection was life-threatening. Infected with tb, whooping cough or pneumonia was equivalent to a death sentence.

The idea that some microbes can be tackled with the help of other already existed in the NINETEENTH century. But the first antibiotic was discovered by the researcher scottish Alexander Fleming in 1928. Despite the fact that Fleming was known for being a brilliant scientist, made the most important discovery of his life thanks to the mess in his laboratory. In a Petri dish with staph forgotten, appeared a few fungi mold that destroyed the bacteria pathogenic.

Alexander Fleming received for his discovery, the Nobel Prize and, thanks to him, humanity can successfully combat tuberculosis, pneumonia, malaria, and other diseases previously considered incurable.

5. Insulin

The organs that are affected by diabetes

Today, 450 million people around the world living with diabetes. Before the invention of insulin, it was impossible for diabetics to have a full life: the complications caused by the disease led to the loss of vision, kidney failure and other serious consequences.

At the beginning of the TWENTIETH century, scientists knew that the cause of diabetes was lack of the pancreatic hormone called insulin. But no one managed to create a drug that could compensate for the complete or partial absence of the hormone. It was not until 1922 that the physiologist canadian Frederick Banting isolated a substance from the pancreas of animals, which was called “ailetin”. The international name “insulin” was assigned to the drug later.

The first person to receive insulin injections was a teenager of 14 years. After the first injection of the drug, his state of health improved significantly. Dr. Banting received by your discovery of the Nobel Prize, and became the possessor of more young of the same. At the time of receiving it he was only 32 years old.

This invention caused a true revolution in endocrinology. Insulin remains the only medication available and safe to stop diabetes.

6. Chemotherapy

The treatment against the cancer always was very dangerous and many times ended not with the victory over the disease. Malignant tumors are very difficult to defeat because the cancer cells mutate constantly and create new clones.

Sidney Farber is regarded as the father of modern chemotherapy. He was the son of an immigrant Polish, wore a style of life very humble, and was paid for the studies to their studies at Harvard University playing the violin. From physician assistant to leading researcher in tumor processes in children: that was the professional path that passed through the doctor. Dr. Farber was the first to try and patent a medicine to combat acute lymphoblastic leukemia in children.

All chemotherapy drugs are powerful cell poisons. For example, mechlorethamine, also known as mustard gas, initially was used as a chemical weapon, and only later discovered the antitumor effect of this toxic compound.

7. The vaccination

Before the NINETEENTH century, millions of people were dying each year in Europe because of the epidemic of smallpox, and the survivors are often left disabled. Smallpox does not forgive anyone: they became its victims, both the monarchs as the common people, and the mortality rate reached 80 %.

The idea that people could get an infection and then become immune to it was born already in the x century. The chinese doctors vacunaban healthy people with a liquid from a bottle that had been used for patients with smallpox. Although these methods were very dangerous: the infant mortality rate was high.

The first person who managed to invent an effective and relatively safe vaccination was a country doctor Edward Jenner. He noticed that dairy cows that had had the cowpox were immune to human smallpox, and concluded that the vaccine could save many lives. Edward Jenner was right. Despite the confrontation of the church and of the lack of understanding of the majority of the other physicians, in the first few years after the discovery of this method of prevention, were vaccinated more than 100 thousand people.

The method of Jenner served as a “source of inspiration” for the creation of vaccines against rabies, tetanus and anthrax. According to the data of the WHO, the vaccination against polio, tetanus, whooping cough and measles save annually the lives of 3 million children around the world.

8. Vitamins

The fact that some products helped to cure diseases was already known by the ancient egyptians. They knew with certainty that the chicken liver helped against the hemeralopia, but they did not know why. People were speculating that the deficit of nutritious food could lead to certain diseases: scurvy, rickets, beriberi. But the mechanisms of its onset are still unknown.

In the EIGHTEENTH century, the entire scientific community is laughing at a scottish physician named James Lind. Habrase seen, the strange man proposed to treat sailors suffering from scurvy with lemons and limes. Although the time showed that Lind was right: the scurvy arose by an acute deficiency of vitamin C.

Dozens of scientists from different countries tried to solve the mystery of the nutrients, but the Nobel Prize was won by the English doctor Frederick Hopkins and the dutchman Christiaan Eijkman. They finally managed to explain to humanity what were the vitamins. This discovery prevented and cured many diseases, some of the modern people has even heard of.

Bonus: memories false

The scientists from the University of Massachusetts implanted false recollections in the brains of mice. The neuroscientists introduced fictitious information in those areas of the brain that are responsible for the information of the past, and literally replaced the good memories for bad.

A few years ago, this discovery was considered amazing. More or less like an operation painless in the NINETEENTH century. Today, however, operations under anesthesia are considered routine. Maybe some day the transplant of memory becomes a reality. And our life will be much more great movies of Hollywood.

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