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Daily Life P L


Contextual info on Medical Care in Austen's time
Phoebe Love9489
Mind Map by Phoebe Love9489, updated more than 1 year ago
Phoebe Love9489
Created by Phoebe Love9489 over 6 years ago

Resource summary

Daily Life P L
  1. Medical Care
    1. Surgical Mortar and Pestle
      1. Still very "Hit and Miss" in the late 18th to early 19th century - people = dying from treatments from DOCTOR'S and APOTHECARIES that were designed to help them
        1. LEECHES were used for bleeding, and cutting veins was still a common practice
          1. Healers did not practice hygiene
            1. Rarely washed their hands
              1. Rarely bothered to change bandages
                1. Long-term patients could lie in bed for weeks in SOILED clothes and bed linen
                  1. Water was NOT BOILED and often contaminated with human wastes
                    1. Such unsanitary conditions and practices spread illness and infections, and those who were trying to saves lives actually spread germs more rapidly
                    2. HYGIENE
                    3. REGENCY DOCTORS/PHYSICIANS
                      1. Positioned on the HIGHEST RUNGS of the medical social ladder
                        1. Often the 2nd/3rd of GENTLEMEN; they made their living in one of the few professions that a man of their social standing were ALLOWED to pursue


                          • Gentlemen: a man of noble birth attached to a royal household; good social position, especially one of wealth and leisure 
                          1. CARTOONS, eg. "William Hogarth's Consultation of Physicians", made fun of their self-importance and general ignorance
                            1. Doctors preferred to be paid in a more discreet manner, and would dine with the family, as they would not directly accept a fee for their services
                              1. Because surgeons performed physical labour, such as amputations, they occupied a SOCIAL rung LOWER than physicians/doctors
                                1. if they stayed with families for any length of time, they probably dined with the UPPER SERVANTS
                              2. Attended PRESTIGIOUS schools like Oxford/Cambridge and studied Greek/Latin - their training (no apprenticeship/practice with actual patients) consisted of observing medical procedures in a lecture hall
                                1. As gentlemen, they would not soil their hands with manual labour, eg. dissecting a corpse for intruction
                            2. SURGEONS IN THE GEORGIAN ERA
                              1. Before mid-18th century: surgeons performed major surgery on patients, and BARBERS carried out minor surgery, eg. bloodletting and pulling teeth (except for going through an apprenticeship, neither man was educated)
                                1. ETHER did not appear until 1846, and surgery was a painful experience
                                  1. Doctors prescribed alcohol, opium, cannabis and mandrake to relieve the pain; less effective methods included: blood letting, ice to coll the affected area, nerve compression and hypnosis
                                    1. If the pain of the surgery didn't kill the patient, then the chance of dying from INFECTION was high:
                                2. Before the 17th century: members of the BARBER-SURGEONS COLLEGE included distillers, musicians, dyers, tailers, innkeepers, hosiers, candle-makers and the like
                                  1. 1745: a billed was passed to separate barbers and surgeons, and by the end of the 18th century, barbers had stopped practicing surgery (except in areas where surgeons were not available)
                                    1. ~ Pre-17th century:
                                      1. ~ 1745:
                                        1. ~ Pre-mid-18th century:
                                          1. ~ End of 18th century:
                                            1. barbers had stopped performing surgery (except in areas were surgeons were not available)
                                            2. surgeons performed major surgery, and barbers till performed minor surgeries
                                            3. bill passed to separate barbers and surgeons
                                            4. members of Barber-Surgeons college (various professions)
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                                        2. 19TH CENTURY APOTHECARIES
                                          1. Essentially a poor man's doctor;
                                            1. In rural areas, where doctors and surgeons were scarce, apothecaries made house calls or treated patients
                                              1. The technology of creating drugs was rudimentary and most remedies were to come degree toxic: digitalis, quinine, and calamine were quite effective, but their discovery had been ACCIDENTAL
                                                1. Most remedies were made with water or alcohol-based extracts, minerals (eg. ground mercury), animal by-products, and a variety of poisons; this meant that a patient could just as soon die from an apothecary's drugs that they sold
                                                2. Because they laboured with their hands, their place on the medical social ladder was below that of the surgeon
                                                  1. Their chances of dining with the family were slim, but if they had to stay over, they most likely dined with the servants
                                                3. Were shopkeepers, and couldn't charge a customer for their advice, only for the drugs they sold
                                                4. MIDWIVES
                                                  1. Before 18th century: FEMALE midwives enjoyed a secure position, obtained licenses from the bishop and made a respectable living
                                                    1. By the end of the 18th century: men had infiltrated the profession; this meant many female midwives became targets for PERSECUTION , and were even accused of being witches
                                                      1. Male midwives: tended to use instruments, females did not; if they delivered a healthy baby, they would receive an additional fee from the godparents
                                                        1. Male physicians primarily assisted in the births of UPPER-class women; eg, botched birth of Princess Charlotte's still-born son (revolutionised obstetrics forever)
                                                        2. Although male midwives were associated with the scientific progress, cases of child bed fever rose with the increased use of forceps during delivery with the increased use of forceps during delivery
                                                          1. By the early 19th century: midwives were relegated to assisting only the birth of LOWER-class women, and their SOCIAL ranks had fallen to reflect their customers'.
                                                    2. REGENCY HOUSEWIVES and COMMON ILLNESSES
                                                      1. Woman of the house was in charge of treating common illness, eg. a cold, headache, stomach ache or rash.
                                                        1. Daughters would inherit recipes for herbal remedies/folk medicine from their mothers, who would teach they which herbs and plants to grow in the kitchen or collect from nature
                                                          1. 18th/19th century cookbooks offered recipes for lozenges, tinctures and poultices
                                                            1. CURES: hot wines, syrups, soups and herbal tea infusions
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