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Medicine & Disease

Caring for the mentally ill in Victorian Britain was hard, unrewarding and dangerously unregulated. Alexander Morison tried to improve things for both the unwell and their carers.

Despite the modern obsession with a good night’s rest, more of us are sleeping less. Perhaps we should pay attention to the advice of early modern doctors.

During the late 18th century the physical effects of tuberculosis became the ideals of beauty for the fashionable woman.

In the fashionable female circles of 18th-century Paris, a physician who recommended fresh air, exercise and looser corsets became a celebrated figure.

The pain of war had at least one positive side-effect: medical advances in haematology.

The legacy of Marie Skłodowska Curie, the world's most famous female physicist, is assured, but in her lifetime she was a controversial figure.

The medical advice in Bald’s Leechbook outlasted the language in which it was written.

The stethoscope revolutionised medicine, but it also provoked anxieties about the unfamiliar sounds it revealed. 

The Hydra, a magazine produced by shell shock patients, was pioneering as a mental health care treatment.

Since it was founded in 1948, the issue of how Britons have laughed with – or at – the NHS reveals much about changes in society.