Ancient Greek Medicine Essay

Words: 1530
Pages: 7

Ancient Greek Medicine

While Greek Medicine particularly from the 5th century B.C onwards, increasingly used scientific method to develop cures, there still however remained people that considered medicine to be a religion. The ancient Greeks (Hellenic) made important discoveries about the human body and health, so by the sixth century BC, medicinal practices focused largely on a more clinical approach involving observation. Their discoveries were made by firstly studying the human anatomy using dissection and vivisection, finding ways to heal using things such as plants and herbs, then finally practising surgery on the human body using different instruments.

Before the scientific method developed, most people still saw medicine as a
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The only chances of his observations came from a wounded mutilated person. Via vivisection, anatomists found that the heart pumps blood, humans breathe through their lungs, they cut flesh from animals and watched it move independently from the heart as proof of arteries and discovered the nervous system from live brains.
Greeks knew that health and fitness (philosophy regimen) affected their quality of life. Most people became concerned with the amounts of exercise they had, what they ate, drank and made sure they had enough sleep. Ancient Greeks started healing with religious methods and then scientific methods were used. Healing that was successful never involved medicines that perform the functions of today's modern anti-biotic. They were capable of disinfecting wounds with alcohol and certain herbs, however once an infection is set in, there was little they could do but bolster the immune system and hope. Consequently many people died in Ancient times from only minor injuries, with even small cuts proving fatal. Health was seen as a proper balance of the four humours, so if these were out of balance, disease occurred. Treatment of a disease is an attempt to rebalance the four humours; this could be done by diet, exercise, administering purgatives, diuretics or emetics, and bloodletting.
Herbs and ointments were used to heal. For example,