medical history

Like an episode of Play School: Dr Semmelweis, at the Harold Pinter Theatre, reviewed

2 September 2023 9:00 am

Bleach and germs are the central themes of Dr Semmelweis, written by Mark Rylance and Stephen Brown. The opening scene,…

A history of pioneering women doctors descends into Mills & Boon trivia

15 October 2022 9:00 am

The first three women doctors on the medical register in the UK had not only to study harder than their…

The history of transplants had many false starts

21 August 2021 9:00 am

On watching transplant surgery, I can give prosaic but essential advice: have a good breakfast. Each operation can last 12…

It took two centuries to eradicate smallpox even after a vaccine was invented

8 August 2020 9:00 am

In supposedly unprecedented times such as ours, there are compelling reasons to turn to the history of medicine. For hope,…

A ‘loneliness pandemic’ could prove as dangerous as coronavirus

9 May 2020 9:00 am

Adrian Woolfson explains the essence of pandemics – and how we can expect many more of them

Warehouses were converted in 1918 to keep patients suffering from the flu pandemic in quarantine. Credit: Getty Images

One hundred years on, could we cope with a new flu pandemic?

26 January 2019 9:00 am

Do you remember the swine flu panic a decade ago? Jeremy Brown, the author of this book, describes it here.…

The surgeon and anatomist David Hayes Agnew, teaching at the University of Pennsylvania in the 1880s. The cautious Americans were initially resistant to Lister, who toured the US hoping to convert the sceptics

How Joseph Lister transformed surgery from butchery to a healing art

13 January 2018 9:00 am

Every operation starts the same way. Chlorhexidine scrubbed under nails, lathered over wet hands, palm-to-palm, fingers interlaced, thumbs, wrists, forearms.…