Old Testament biblical references to tuberculosis.
Two probable references to tuberculosis are found in Old Testament books of the Bible dating to a time when the Israelites lived in Egypt, which is known from archeological evidence to be an area where tuberculosis was then prevalent. Other putative biblical references to tuberculosis are less credible. (+info)
Shaken, not stirred: bioanalytical study of the antioxidant activities of martinis.
BACKGROUND: Moderate consumption of alcoholic drinks seems to reduce the risks of developing cardiovascular disease, stroke, and cataracts, perhaps through antioxidant actions of their alcohol, flavonoid, or polyphenol contents. "Shaken, not stirred" routinely identifies the way the famous secret agent James Bond requires his martinis. OBJECTIVES: As Mr Bond is not afflicted by cataracts or cardiovascular disease, an investigation was conducted to determine whether the mode of preparing martinis has an influence on their antioxidant capacity. DESIGN: Stirred and shaken martinis were assayed for their ability to quench luminescence by a luminescent procedure in which hydrogen peroxide reacts with luminol bound to albumin. Student's t test was used for statistical analysis. RESULTS: Shaken martinis were more effective in deactivating hydrogen peroxide than the stirred variety, and both were more effective than gin or vermouth alone (0.072% of peroxide control for shaken martini, 0.157% for stirred v 58.3% for gin and 1.90% for vermouth). The reason for this is not clear, but it may well not involve the facile oxidation of reactive martini components: control martinis through which either oxygen or nitrogen was bubbled did not differ in their ability to deactivate hydrogen peroxide (0.061% v 0. 057%) and did not differ from the shaken martini. Moreover, preliminary experiments indicate that martinis are less well endowed with polyphenols than Sauvignon white wine or Scotch whisky (0.056 mmol/l (catechin equivalents) shaken, 0.060 mmol/l stirred v 0.592 mmol/l wine, 0.575 mmol/l whisky). CONCLUSIONS: 007's profound state of health may be due, at least in part, to compliant bartenders. (+info)
Machado de Assis's own writings about his epilepsy: a brief clinical note.
Machado de Assis's own writings about his epilepsy are here given. They come from his correspondence with his friend Mario de Alencar during the last 8 months of Machado de Assis's life. These are the only places where Machado de Assis dealt clearly with his epilepsy during his entire life. (+info)
The Chinese Nail Murders: forensic medicine in Imperial China.
Robert van Gulik was a respected Dutch sinologist and author who first translated a collection of traditional Chinese detective stories into English and then created additional fictional stories based on the same characters and setting in the Tang dynasty. One of these stories, The Chinese Nail Murders, draws on van Gulik's professional interest in law and his knowledge of early Chinese works on forensic medicine. This novel develops a common theme in Chinese detective fiction, murder by a nail wound to the head. The difficulty in detection of this mode of violence posed a particular problem for the examining magistrate because postmortem examination was mostly limited to external observations. This essay compares the development of Chinese and Western forensic medicine in the context of the nail murder motif. (+info)
At wit's end: forgiveness, dignity, and the care of the dying.
Medical commentators on the play W;t by Margaret Edson, have tended to highlight the play's medical themes in the hope that this will help to improve the care of the dying. In this essay, the author argues that a close reading of the play suggests an alternative approach. This approach would require physicians to become personally engaged with the play's broad underlying themes, in particular the themes of dignity, relationship, and forgiveness. Physicians who do this might be able to undergo the sort of personal transformation that could allow them to relate to dying patients more fully as fellow human beings. Such a reaction to the play by physicians might truly and radically improve the care of the dying. (+info)
Journals of the plague years: documenting the history of the AIDS epidemic in the United States.
This commentary discusses several journalistic, literary, and historical accounts of the AIDS epidemic as it has unfolded in the United States over the past 2 decades. By examining the different ways that different types of storytellers chronicle the political, social, public health, medical, and economic aspects of epidemic disease, this essay will demonstrate why the AIDS epidemic has been of such intense interest not only to physicians and public health experts but also to journalists, novelists, playwrights, memoirists, and historians. AIDS is a particularly fascinating example of society's broad concern with epidemics because it both is a global pandemic and, in recent years, has become a chronic disease. (+info)
By their teeth shall ye know them.
These extracts from the literary archive focus on the role of teeth as a facial feature. Their contribution to favourable and unfavourable facial appearance by their presence or absence, their use as a guide to character and as a means of identification are illustrated. (+info)
Introducing death: a 15th century Croatian Glagolitic literary text.
We explored the notions of life and death as perceived and presented in a 15th century Croatian literary text, Slovo Mestra Polikarpa, in which master Polikarp, a well-learned man of medieval times, engages in a lengthy dialogue with Death itself. This contrast/debate is a rare piece of medieval literature, not only by its Old Croatian language, but also by the angular Glagolitic script in which it was written. As a part of Croatian cultural heritage, it is deeply rooted in and clearly belongs to the common context of Western European medieval views on life, health, ailing, and death. A medieval perspective on such issues might be interesting to broad readership and, in many aspects, to medical professionals, whose everyday practice necessarily involves not only practical and scientific, but also moral, philosophical, and religious deliberations about life and death. (+info)