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Plagues ancient egypt

Ahmad A Othman, Rasha H Soliman
Schistosomiasis has plagued the Egyptian population since the antiquity. The disease is still a public health problem in Egypt, despite the tendency of being overlooked. In the first part of this review, the past and current trends of schistosomiasis in Egypt are reviewed, including history, epidemiology, morbidity, therapy, and control of the disease. Most of these aspects are more or less relevant to other schistosome-endemic regions all over the world. As only one drug is currently available for individual treatment and preventive mass chemotherapy, the quest for complementary measures is urgently warranted...
August 2015: Acta Tropica
Weiyang Chen, Ilze Vermaak, Alvaro Viljoen
The fragrant camphor tree (Cinnamomum camphora) and its products, such as camphor oil, have been coveted since ancient times. Having a rich history of traditional use, it was particularly used as a fumigant during the era of the Black Death and considered as a valuable ingredient in both perfume and embalming fluid. Camphor has been widely used as a fragrance in cosmetics, as a food flavourant, as a common ingredient in household cleaners, as well as in topically applied analgesics and rubefacients for the treatment of minor muscle aches and pains...
2013: Molecules: a Journal of Synthetic Chemistry and Natural Product Chemistry
Sergio Sabbatani, Sirio Fiorino
In ancient times the term pestilence referred not only to infectious disease caused by Yersinia pestis, but also to several different epidemics. We explore the relations between references in the Bible and recent scientific evidence concerning some infectious diseases, especially the so-called Plague of the Philistines and leprosy. In addition, some considerations regarding possible connections among likely infectious epidemic diseases and the Ten Plagues of Egypt are reported. Evidence suggesting the presence of the rat in the Nile Valley in the II millennium BC is shown; a possible role of the rat in the plague spreading already in this historical period should be confirmed by these data...
September 2010: Le Infezioni in Medicina
Bernard Ziskind
First described by Theodor Bilharz in 1851, Schistosoma haematobium, the worm responsible for urinary schistosomiasis, was a major health problem along the Nile Valley until the present days. Haematuria, the main symptom of this parasitic disease, was known and treated in Egyptian medical papyri since 1550 B.C. A relationship between haematuria and the god Seth was envisaged. Sir Marc Armand Ruffer, pioneer of paleopathology, found (1910) calcified Schistosoma eggs in Egyptian mummies of the xxth dynasty, establishing that bilharzia plagued ancient Egypt people...
December 2009: Néphrologie & Thérapeutique
Bernard Ziskind
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
April 20, 2009: La Revue du Praticien
George W Beran
When early people made their appearance, zoonotic infectious diseases were already waiting, but epidemic diseases did not appear in human history until people began to live in large numbers under conditions of close contact, mainly during the last 10,000 years. Disease has decimated urban populations, conquered armies, and disrupted society. The focus here is on (1) the plague of Athens and the Black Death; (2) smallpox, influenza, and rabies; (3) avian influenza prion diseases, and foot & mouth disease; and (4) emerging and re-emerging diseases...
September 15, 2008: Preventive Veterinary Medicine
N Joel Ehrenkranz, Deborah A Sampson
Analyses of past disasters may supply insights to mitigate the impact of recurrences. In this context, we offer a unifying causative theory of Old Testament plagues, which has present day public health implications. We propose the root cause to have been an aberrant El Niño-Southern Oscillation teleconnection that brought unseasonable and progressive climate warming along the ancient Mediterranean littoral, including the coast of biblical Egypt, which, in turn, initiated the serial catastrophes of biblical sequence - in particular arthropod-borne and arthropod-caused diseases...
March 2008: Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine
B Ziskind, B Halioua
INTRODUCTION: Did Tuberculosis plague Ancient Egypt five millennia ago? STATE OF THE ART: Some medical papyri appear to evoke tuberculosis. Egyptian physicians did not individualize it, but they seem to have noticed some of its clinical expressions, such as cough, cervical adenitis, and cold abscesses. In Egyptian iconography, some cases of hump-backs were probably due to Pott's disease of the spine Descriptive paleopathology, born with the 20th century, has identified pulmonary and especially spinal lesions compatible with tuberculosis...
December 2007: Revue des Maladies Respiratoires
Siro Igino Trevisanato
A long-lasting epidemic that plagued the Eastern Mediterranean in the 14th century BC was traced back to a focus in Canaan along the Arwad-Euphrates trading route. The symptoms, mode of infection, and geographical area, identified the agent as Francisella tularensis, which is also credited for outbreaks in Canaan around 1715 BC and 1075 BC. At first, the 14th century epidemic contaminated an area stretching from Cyprus to Iraq, and from Israel to Syria, sparing Egypt and Anatolia due to quarantine and political boundaries, respectively...
2007: Medical Hypotheses
Siro Igino Trevisanato
An epidemic thought to have been the first instance of bubonic plague in the Mediterranean reveals to have been an episode of tularemia. The deadly epidemic took place in the aftermath of the removal of a wooden box from an isolated Hebrew sanctuary. Death, tumors, and rodents thereafter plagued Philistine country. Unlike earlier explanations proposed, tularemia caused by Francisella tularensis exhaustively explains the outbreak. Tularemia fits all the requirements indicated in the biblical text: it is carried by animals, is transmitted to humans, results in the development of ulceroglandular formations, often misdiagnosed for bubonic plague, and is fatal...
2007: Medical Hypotheses
Siro Igino Trevisanato
Egyptian medical papyri date the Santorini eruption, and reconcile the hitherto perceived dichotomy between archaeological/historical and scientific data. The medical documentation describes ailments, which can only have arisen from a volcanic source: ash fallout, rain acidified by ash, and a plume. Furthermore, the Egypt described by the medical texts matches the one in the series of so-called biblical plagues. This match in turn provides the length of time, 19 months, between the initial and final phases of the eruption, each phase contributing to the otherwise odd accumulation of sulfates spread over two consecutive biennia (1603-1600 BC) in Greenland's ice core...
2007: Medical Hypotheses
Siro Igino Trevisanato
Six medical papyri document how Santorini's volcanic ash from the Bronze Age biphasic eruption, otherwise attested by material retrieved at the bottom of lakes at the edge of the Nile Delta, severely affected the health of the inhabitants of Egypt as well as their society as a whole. Treatments for burns caused by particulate and dissolved acids are documented in the London Medical Papyrus as well as in the Ebers Papyrus, and are compatible with ash fallout and ash in rain, respectively. Furthermore, both instances of ash correlate to the first eight biblical plagues...
2006: Medical Hypotheses
Siro Igino Trevisanato
Six treatments for burns in the London Medical Papyrus provide data regarding a volcanic fallout over Egypt. They confirm a previously established scenario linking the medical text to one specific eruption, the one at Santorini in the Bronze Age. One treatment describes the contamination of waters with the ash. Four treatments describe the effects of the ash on the skin. The sixth treatment describes the effect of acid rain following the dispersion of ash in the atmosphere, which triggered weather anomalies...
2006: Medical Hypotheses
Siro Igino Trevisanato
Paragraph 55 of the London Medical Papyrus describes burns derived from red waters and which later became infected with larvae in the wounds. The prescribed treatment for the burn is unusual as it calls for no rinsing and requires bandaging with alkaline materials only. Refraining from washing in the Nile (the single most readily available source of water in ancient Egypt), and the use of alkali-neutralizing agents indicates that the red caustic waters came from the river, and were acid in nature. A red, acid Nile is consistent with the first biblical plague of Egypt, which killed fish, and kept people from drinking from the river...
2005: Medical Hypotheses
J Curtis Nickel
PURPOSE: Urinary tract infections (UTIs) have plagued mankind long before bacteria were recognized as the causative agents of disease and before urology became an established medical specialty. To our knowledge a comprehensive review of the recorded medical history of UTI from its first description in ancient Egyptian papyri through today has not been attempted until now. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Numerous resources were used to collect the information described in this review...
January 2005: Journal of Urology
Siro I Trevisanato
The dynamics of the spreading, and the identity of a virulent epidemic, similar to bubonic plague or typhus, which hit Ancient Egypt in the middle of the Bronze Age, are hereby presented. Documented in medical papyri as well as archaeological findings, and re-echoed in biblical texts, a plague entered Egypt's main harbor, Avaris, around 1715 BC. As a result, the country was severely weakened at a time when it was already facing serious sociopolitical issues: crumbling central government, immigration, foreign influence, and the rise in power of the army and of warlords...
2004: Medical Hypotheses
Kimberly A Wenner, Julie R Kenner
Anthrax is an ancient disease associated with the plagues in biblical Egypt and modern bioterrorism. Three clinical syndromes result from exposure to anthrax spores: cutaneous,inhalational, and gastrointestinal. Cutaneous anthrax is the most common naturally occurring syndrome; inhalational anthrax is most likely to result from airborne release of spores. Prophylactic and early treatment can improve the mortality from inhalational anthrax. A vaccine is available, but has many limitations. New vaccines are currently being developed...
July 2004: Dermatologic Clinics
Iqbal Akhtar Khan
Plague is one of mankind's greatest scourges, which has swept away millions of people over the centuries. The first available record of the occurrence of this calamity, in humans, is from the Bible, in 1000 bc, in the city of Ashdod. The first definitely identified pandemic originated in Egypt in ad 542 (the Justinian Plague) and is estimated to have caused 100 million deaths. The second one, lasting for three centuries and claiming over 25 million lives appeared in 1334 in China spreading to many spots on the globe...
May 2004: Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
M Fernando Rodríguez-Ortega, Guadalupe Cárdenas-Martínez, Hugo López-Castañeda
Hernia (know breuk in Dutch, rompure in French, keal in Greek and rupture in English) has plagued humans throughout recorded history and descriptions of hernia reduction date back to the Ebers papyrus in Egypt. In medicine it is difficult to find historical periods, but we found two eras of uneven time: pre-technique and technique. The first was distinguished by a blend of empiricism and magic, and the second for greater comprehension of the human body; however much of modern surgical techniques result from contributions of early surgeons...
May 2003: Cirugia y Cirujanos
Liubov Ben-Noun
The illness known as Anthrax is very rare in the west. In developing countries relatively significant numbers of cases are found, particularly in animals. However, biological terrorist acts could cause it to spread. In Hebrew, the illness is now called Gahelet or Gameret. The purpose of this paper is to examine whether the illness is described in the Bible, and if so, to present that description and provide a broader survey of the features of this illness. The word Gahelet appears in the Bible, but not indicating a disease, while the source of Gameret is in the Talmud...
May 2002: Harefuah
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