Medicine & Disease

Upon the death in 1865 of Dr James Barry, the irascible Inspector General of Hospitals, army surgeon and medical reformer, an old friend opened...

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

The Civil Wars of the 17th century prompted pioneering medical care and welfare, provided by the state not just for soldiers but for the widows and children they left behind, as Eric Gruber von Arni and Andrew Hopper show.

The belief that a king’s laying on of hands could cure the disfiguring disease of scrofula gained new heights of popularity during the Restoration, as Stephen Brogan explains.

The career of the brilliant physiologist Brown-Séquard is a reminder of the perils of scientific innovation.

Epidemics spread mistrust, as communities seek to blame their plight on outsiders or those at the margins of society. Yet the historical record reveals that outbreaks are more likely to bring people together than force them apart.

Men’s awkwardness when talking about their bodies, especially sexual health, has changed little since the 17th century. Jennifer Evans looks into the private worries of men and their doctors.

‘Shell shock’ is associated in particular with the First World War. Stuart M. Archer recounts the often brutal treatment meted out to sufferers of the condition and looks at how use of the term fell into disrepute. 

Elizabeth Garrett Anderson passed her medical exams on September 28th 1865.

Joseph Lister's medical technique was first performed on August 12th, 1865.