History of Medicine: Middle Ages Plague

James McConnell
Mind Map by James McConnell, updated more than 1 year ago
James McConnell
Created by James McConnell almost 6 years ago


A mind map covering the Black Death (1348-9) and the Great Plague (1665) which feature in the GCSE History of Medicine Paper. Also now covers information on the two eras in which they take place.

Resource summary

History of Medicine: Middle Ages Plague
1 Black Death
1.1 The Middle Ages
1.1.1 Who treated the sick? Wise Women Travelling Quack Housewife Physician Physician Surgeon Apothecary Nuns UNLICENSED LICENSED
1.1.2 What did they do? Basic surgery, but there is still no anaesthetic Ancient theories still widely believed The 4 Humors Theory of Opposites Some knowledge of working remedies Treatments passed down by word of mouth Or family traditions Some conned the ill out of money by not curing them at all
1.1.3 What were hospitals like? Religious buildings Only poor people and elderly went there The rich were treated in their own home by a physician Patients expected to pray for recovery Nuns treat people Dead people prepared for burial in view of other patients Some were not allowed in Contagious/infected "Lunatics" Pregnant women
1.2 Attempts to Combat and Cure
1.2.1 Herbal Remedies
1.2.2 Enemas
1.2.3 Praying to God
1.2.4 Flaggelants whipped themselves and gave up possessions
1.2.5 Lavender masks
1.2.6 Galen's theory of opposites
1.3 Suspected Cause
1.3.1 Imbalance of Humors
1.3.2 Religious Reasons
1.3.3 Alignment of the planets
1.3.4 Invisible fumes, miasma
1.3.5 Contact with the infected
1.4 Success?
1.4.1 The plague took out nearly half of the UK Population
1.4.2 Lavender Masks did prevent some spread of disease
1.4.3 Occasional herbal remedies worked
1.4.4 Flaggelants were less likely to catch plague due to isolation
2 The Great Plague
2.1 Post-Renaissance
2.1.1 Who treated the sick? Trained and licensed healers started working in new hospitals
2.1.2 What were hospitals like? Local authorities started taking over hospitals Many new ones opened Trained physicians, surgeons, and nursing sisters worked in them No longer ran by nuns Kept clean by volunteer helpers Most patients still poor and elderly
2.1.3 What did they do? Patients were kept clean, warm and fed New understanding of treatment New understanding of anatomy from Vesalius New understanding of blood from Harvey Technology such as ligatures from Pare
2.2 Suspected Cause
2.2.1 Cats and Dogs, they were slaughtered
2.2.2 Bad air (miasma)
2.2.3 Much of the same as the Black Death
2.2.4 Comet seen the year before over London
2.3 Attempts to Combat and Cure
2.3.1 'Searchers' employed to find the infected
2.3.2 Infected people were locked in their houses A red cross painted on the door Their whole family would be locked in with them To avoid spread of plague 'Watchmen' employed to stop people escaping their homes
2.3.3 Pubs closed to stop it spreading
2.3.4 Vagrants were moved on from the streets
2.3.5 Fires were started to stop bad air
2.4 Success?
2.4.1 Anything to stop contact with others would have helped to reduce death Pub closures and locking people in houses
2.4.2 Occasional herbal remedy may have worked
2.4.3 Less people died than during Black Plague An estimated 15% of Londoners 100,000 people
2.4.4 People argued less would have died if only the infected had been locked up, not their whole family However it took 5 days for symptoms to be visible so it was a reasonable precaution
3 What was the Plague?
3.1 Symptoms
3.1.1 Suspected to be Bubonic Plague
3.1.2 Buboes on the neck and in armits and groin area Leaks pus and blood
3.1.3 Symptoms occurred 5 days after lice bite
3.1.4 Death after 6 days
3.2 What Actually Caused It?
3.2.1 Rats carrying gut infected lice
3.2.2 Probably travelled to the UK on trade ships
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