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Humoral, Anatomical and Germ Theories of Disease: the Influence on Today’s Health and Wellness.

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  • December 5, 2011
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Humoral, Anatomical and Germ Theories of Disease: The influence on today’s health and wellness.

In humoral theory, individual diseases did not exist how we see them today. It was thought that if one of the four humors was out of balance, it would result in disease. The four humors are black bile, yellow bile, blood and phlegm. The basic theory was that the imbalance of one of these four humors was the root cause of all disease.

Anatomical theory of disease is one that fights against the humoral theory. Anatomical theory was said to questions the humoral theory because a man studied the pathology and symptoms of patients and linked the two together. He discovered that blood flowing throughout the body could carry disease to different parts of the body, thus leading to further investigation of the humoral theory.

Germ theory is that specific diseases were the result of specific microscopic organisms. Germ theory was brought about when many female patients who had just given birth were dying of what was called childbirth fever, or septicemia. There was a connection made and it brought about the discovery of antiseptics and proving that diseases were communicable.

Today we know disease as forces or entities separate from the body, which goes against the humoral theory. Humoral theory was thought that an overabundance or lower amount of one of the four humors could result in disease. However, anatomical theory was studied and symptoms and behaviors of patients were linked to individual organs searching for the deeper cause a patients problems and a huge gap was bridged between pathology and symptoms. Germ theory was thought that germs spontaneously caused death, linking death and pathogenic bacteria.

Each of the three theories is different, covering different barriers when it came to treating diseases. Humoral theory began with the four humors, while the anatomical concept searched deeper in the bodies functioning systems to find what was going on...