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CMW WHAP Unit 2 2019 CED: Networks of Exchange

Terms in this set (49)

Drawing from a growing body of Greek, Persian, and Sanskrit works translated into Arabic, Islamic medicine quickly became the most sophisticated in the world. Christians, Jews, Hindus, and scholars from many other traditions, looked to Arabic as a language of science. The surgeon Al-Zahrawi, also known as Abulcasis, compiled the Al-Tasrif—The Method of Medicine—a 30-volume encyclopedia that documented accounts of his and his colleagues' experiences in treating the sick and injured: surgical instruments, operating techniques, pharmacological methods to prepare tablets and drugs to protect the heart, surgical procedures used in midwifery, cauterizing and healing wounds, and the treatment of headaches. New treatments were developed for specific ailments, including a revolutionary treatment to treat cataracts. The 10th-century physician Al-Mawsili developed a hollow syringe to remove cataracts via suction; the technique has improved with time, but the basic premise of the procedure remains sound to this day. advances in surgery of the era were detailed by Al-Zahrawi who invented a wide range of instruments: forceps, pincers, scalpels, catheters, cauteries, lancets, and specula, all carefully illustrated in his writings. His recommendations on pain-reduction techniques, such as the use of very cold sponges, were followed by Western medics for centuries. One of his greatest innovations was the use of catgut for stitching up patients after an operation, a practice that is still in use today.

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