8 Medical Practices From Medieval Times That Will Turn Your Stomach
8 Medical Practices From Medieval Times That Will Turn Your Stomach

8 Medical Practices From Medieval Times That Will Turn Your Stomach

Stephanie Schoppert - March 16, 2017

8 Medical Practices From Medieval Times That Will Turn Your Stomach
Medieval Physician and Pharmacist from a 15th century book on surgery by Hieronymus Brunschwig. Fineartamerica.com

Animal Cures

There were a number of different medieval medical treatments that involved using different animals. Different animals and animals parts were believed to have different healing effects on the patient. Many of the treatments had no real basis other than guesses or they were steeped in mythology and ancient practices. Insects could also be used. For example to treat jaundice a patient was to swallow nine lice mixed with ale every morning for a whole week.

One such cure was to wear a donkey skin to treat rheumatism. The patient was to wear the entire skin of the donkey, ensuring that all of their sore joints were covered by the hide. It was suggested that the skin not more worn more than fourteen days and not to wear it after it had begun to rot because that might invite other illness.

If a person was suffering from asthma the cure for that was simple. All the patient had to do was swallow some young frogs. It is unclear why the frogs were supposed to help cure asthma and there is no evidence that it would have been successful.

To cure gout the process was much more involved and similar to the treatment of quinsy. First the physician would take a red-haired dog and boil it in oil. Then the physician would add worms, pig’s marrow and a variety of different herbs to the pot. This would then be made into a mixture that could be smeared on the affected area.

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