For our final #MuseumWeek post we're talking about why we LOVE medical history and why we hope that love is contagious! #loveMW
It's not uncommon for the Dittrick Medical History Center to be referred to a bit like a cabinet of curiosities, a niche museum, or perhaps more kindly, a "hidden treasure." Although we've always worked to make collections accessible and major public engagement efforts are underway, we still often have to make the case for the (sometimes not so) implicit question "Why should I care about medical history?"
The answer tends to go a little like this:
Medical history is the history...
Anesthesia: it calls to mind surgeries, treatment of shock--the rendering of a patient unconscious and free (temporarily) from pain. But anesthesia has played an enormous role in the shifting ideas surrounding labor and birth in America generally--and right here in Cleveland. It's more than a knock-out; it's an ever-changing history!
On Thursday, November 19th at 6:00pm, Dittrick will share this fascinating story through a gallery opening (Childbirth in America, 1840-1940) and a talk by celebrated author and historian Jacqueline Wolf. Reproduction, birth, and women's health in the 19th century shaped the way we practice obstetrics today. One of the biggest...
John Snow in Anesthesia and Epidemiology
Today, June 16th, we remember the work of Dr. John Snow who died on this day in 1858. During his lifetime, Snow’s innovative work in the fields of anesthesia and epidemiology was met either with public rejoicing or skepticism . As public opinion has shifted with new available information, technologies, and social expectations, so has the response to Snow’s endeavors. When the control and protection of bodies become subjects of public discourse, the morbid matters of health are determined not only by research, but by convention.
Chloroform: The Popular Poison
John Snow popularized the use of chloroform...
Last week, Dr. Edmonson (curator of the Dittrick Museum), provided a kind introduction to my work. Today, I am happy to continue the tale with part one of a two-part series.
This journey took place over the course of three years, on two continents--and through the wonderful collections of several museums, beginning with our own Dittrick. I give you the tale--of a trail.
--Brandy Schillace, PhD
On the Trail of the Machine: William Smellie's "Celebrated Apparatus"
What is the lifespan of a medical device? Most generally, the utility of any instrument determines its tenure in medical practice—and subsequent models evolve to replace their...