Medical history needs you…!

Been meaning to write for a while about the Royal College of Surgeons, home of the Hunterian Museum and library, now both endorsed as heritage sites. The Hunterian has obvious ghoulish fascination, but no less significant are the books, letters, and images that rarely see daylight (space issues, and too fragile).

Tracing the incremental steps in medicine’s understanding of the body, how it malfunctions and how it can be fixed, is fascinating and informative. Also a reminder of how far astray, and with what conviction, we can mislead ourselves… and of the power of painstaking research, observation and collaboration.

Preserving the library is a mountainous task, given that many objects and books are at an advanced stage of decrepitude. In an interesting nod to a method more often seen for the cute and furry, the RCS have set up a scheme where we, the public, can pick items to sponsor. See Conserve Our Collections at…

My personal pick was an elegantly illustrated textbook, ‘Observations on Some Points Relating to the Anatomy, Physiology and Pathology of the Nervous System,’ an area of personal and professional interest. Donations are taken by post or phone, currently. They may not be cute, but these textbooks need a bit of help…

(which isn’t to say that guide dog puppies and pandas aren’t equally deserving…!)

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