Why Did the Discoveries of the Renaissance Make Little Practical Difference to Medical Treatment Between 1500-1700?

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  • Topic: History of anatomy, Physiology, Galen
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  • Published : January 6, 2013
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Why did the discoveries of the Renaissance make little practical difference to medical treatment between c1500-c1700?

During the renaissance there were 3 significant figures, who were Andreas Vesalius who was famous for his knowledge in anatomy, Ambroise Paré who was famous for his advances in surgery, and William Harvey who was famous for working out how the body worked (physiology). These three made extremely big and definitely important discoveries, but for different reasons never really at the time came about to have an importance.

Andreas Vesalius published a book entitled “The Fabric of the Human Body” which was published around the time that printing first came about. His specialism was anatomy, and in the book that he published he made a detailed sketch of the human anatomy. One of the reasons why his work was never really that well established and well known was that at the time that he published his book on his findings, printing had only really just started to develop across the world, and this made a limited impact because of the fact that books at the time were very expensive (as are most new things), which meant that only the rich could really get their hands on them.

Ambroise Paré published the book named “Works on Surgery” and this was published shortly after the book written by Vesalius. This book contained his new discoveries about surgery i.e. how to sufficiently heal a wound using herbal remedies, and also how to stop bleeding by using stitches. His ideas most definitely changed surgery and his concepts are still used today. His ideas made a limited impact because at the time people were still very in to Galen’s work from the middle ages, which meant that most people did not want to accept the possibility of change, and furthermore it was so different to what they had before that it just seemed crazy to them, and wanted to stick to their family traditions and this had a limited impact because they didn’t experiment and most...
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