Saturday, 9 February 2008

Fairly interesting piece on Roman medicine in Britain

From BBC Health

Think of the Roman legacy to Britain and many things spring to mind - straight roads, under-floor heating, aqueducts and public baths.

But they were also pioneers in the health arena - particularly in the area of eye care, with remedies for various eye conditions such as short-sightedness and conjunctivitis.

Perhaps most surprisingly of all is that the Romans - and others from ancient times, including the Chinese, Indians and Greeks - were also able also to carry out cataract operations.

The Romans were almost certainly the first to do this in Britain.

Surgical skills

Nowadays the procedure can be carried out by lasers, but in Roman times technology was rather more basic - needles were inserted into the eye.

The sharp end of the needle was used for surgery and the blunt end heated to cauterise the wound.

Full article here

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