The History of Medicine part 3

In this episode we pick up the history of medicine just when it begins to get more scientific. This is great for the general health of humanity but less good for us as we are frequently out of our depths. We soldier gamely on through the discovery of the circulation of blood, the founding of hospitals, germ theory and vaccinations. Otto does a great solo slot on penicillin and we even discuss the heart-lung machine, see image below. We make a couple of references to Otto’s sister Ava-Jane who is a one-person history of medicine.

The main image is of Mary Seacole.

You can listen to the episode here:

Or on…




If you are in the North Bucks and want some delicious raw milk, the place to go is Udderly Fresh: Winslow, Buckinghamshire, MK18 3LF. This reference will only make sense once you have listened to the episode.

V0015400 Crimean War: Florence Nightingale at Scutari Hospital, 1856,

Please, please do not quote any of the medical facts that you hear on this show. We have not deliberately included any falsehoods but it would be worth checking anything you heard here. Links to things that we didn’t really know what we were talking about for anyone who wants to fact check:

Vaccinations vs Inoculations
Mad cow disease

Alexander Fleming and a petri dish


We went to the Museum of the History of Science in Oxford, which had an exhibition about penicillin. It has some interesting permanent exhibits, including the machines Lister developed that we mention. You can see the website here.

Other than that we didn’t do any further research beyond what we had done for the previous episode(s).

Florence Nightingale: Credit: Wellcome Library, London. Wellcome Images Crimean War: Florence Nightingale at Scutari Hospital, 1856, plus a portrait drawing. Process print, 1908. 1908 Published: 21 March 1908
Heart-lung machine:By National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NIH) (National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NIH)) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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