Bloodletting Research Paper

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Bloodletting was an early practice that involved draining the blood out of people to help rid them of any disease in the body. It was not just limited to diseases, though. It could be used to cure anything from herpes to acne to frequent strokes. Surprisingly, it was not typically doctors who did this job. It fell into the hands of barbers everywhere. Ever notice that pole outside the barber shop? The red represents the blood, the white represents the tourniquets used, and the pole represents the stick patients would squeeze to dilate the veins. In ancient Greek culture, there was a physician named Galen of Pergamon. This man took a very scientific approach to bloodletting, and even made the discovery that arteries were filled with blood, not air. He believed, at first, that blood…show more content…
For example, if there were liver problems he would cut and drain from the right hand. He also tried giving his patients medicines to induce vomiting or urination to rid the body of their sickness. Going into the 19th century, leeches were used to drain blood from a patient. A French physician once treated his patient with 50 leeches at one time. Bloodletting was a continued practice into the 20th century. In a 1923 medical textbook bloodletting was still a recommended cure. There were four main ways to bloodlet. The first was leeches. The second, a process called an arteriotomy. This consisted of puncturing and bleeding the arteries in the temples. The third one was called a phlebotomy, where a large external vein would be cut to draw blood. The last process was called scarification, using a tool called a scarificator to get at the superficial blood vessels. No matter how, the patient would have the blood drained from their body until they fainted, and then the process could be repeated multiple times until either death from lack of blood or death from disease. Bloodletting was found to be a dangerous practice even in the 1830’s, but was not

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