Alcmaeon of Crotona (fl. c535 BCE)
He is regarded as one of the earliest pioneers in medical science. His studies in natural philosophy, biology, anatomy, and pathological and physical aspects of internal disease have been influential. He is credited as having been the originator of experimental psychology.
Andreas (??-217 BCE)
He was physician to Ptolemy IV. He wrote books on snakebite, a work considering descriptions of plants and animals, and a treatise against superstition.
Antyllus (fl. c110-130 CE)
He was famous as a skilled surgeon and was quoted by Galen. He made a study of venesection and cupping and wrote down detailed instructions for operations (e.g., cataracts and tracheotomy).
Archigenes of Apamaea (fl. 100-117 CE)
He taught elaborate pulse theory and invented a classification of stages of fever and four stages of disease.
Aretaeus the Cappadocian (81-?? CE)
He gave good accounts of asthma, diabetes, diphtheria, empyema, epilepsy, pleurisy, pneumonia, tetanus, and paralysis of the hemiplegic form, pointing out that the paralysis occurred on the opposite side to the lesion in the brain. He also wrote on ulcerations about the tonsils and the cure of affections about the uvula. He recognized the differences between cerebral and spinal paralysis.
Asclepiades of Bithynia (c124-?? BCE)
He established a medical school in Rome. He advanced safe, speedy, and agreeable treatment of disease and pioneered humane treatment for mental disorders.
Celsus (fl. 14-37 CE)
His eight volumes of “De Medicina” were a part of a larger encyclopedia. It was among the first medical texts to be published by the printing press in 1478. Many of the practices were used up till the 19th century.
He named heat, pain, redness, and swellings as the four telltale signs of inflamation. He discussed such topics as: the history of medicine, diet and regimen, fevers, ulcers, venereal disease, facial plastic surgery using skin transplants, antiseptics, eye surgery, surgical hygiene, heart disease, the use of ligatures to stop arterial haemorrhage, insanity, hydrotherapy, tonsillectomy, oral and dental surgery, and the removel of bladder stones.
Chrysippus of Cnidus (fl. c370 BCE)
He was associated with the traditions of the Cnidian centre of medical instruction. He wrote a treatise on vegetables, noting the health-promoting properties of cabbage.
Demetrius of Apamaea (fl. 110-90 BCE)
He was a specialist in gynecology and obstetrics.
Diocles of Carystos (fl. c360-330 BCE)
He was called a second Hippocrates by the Athenians. He was known to have carried out experiments in dissection. He also wrote on medical botany.
Dioscorides (fl. 41-68 CE)
In “Materia Medica” (five volumes), he described the medicinal properties of about six hundred plants and nearly one thousand drugs. This book was the standard text for pharmacy until the 17th century. While a surgeon in the Roman army, he collected plant specimens all over the known world.
Empedocles of Agrigentum (492-c430 BCE)
He emphasized the therapeutic value of exercise, a healthy diet, and the maintenance of the purity of mind and body. Because he believed in the transmigration of souls, he taught that to eat an animal was an act of cnnibalism. He considered the heart to be the centre of the system of blood vessels through which the blood distributed innate heat to other parts of the body.
Erastratus (c300-250 BCE)
He was a contemporary of Herophilus, whose investigations in anatomy and physiology he continued. He was the first to expound a complete physiological scheme of the body. He abandoned the doctrine of humours for explaining the origin of disease. He distinguished between cranial sensory and cranial motor nerves. He knew that the heart was the centre and source for both arteries and veins and that there are fine interconnections between arteries and veins. He was ahead of all medical opinion in this area until William Harvey in 1628.
He is credited with inventing the first catheter and the first calorimeter. He also associated ascites with a hard liver (probably hepatic cirrhosis).
Eudemus of Alexandria (fl. c240 BCE)
He was an anatomist who studied the nervous system, human osteology, female sex organs, and experimented in embryological studies.
Evenor of Argos (fl. c380 BCE)
He was a gynaecologist and ophthmologist of repute. He is noted for his introduction of speculation into the Hippocratic method. He wrote a book entitled “On Treatments.”
Galen (129-199 CE)
His influence on medicine in ancient and modern times has not been equalled. He was the most learned scientist of his day. His surviving works cover every branch of health and disease, especially physiology and anatomy. However, he believed that there was a close connection between medicine and philosophy.BR> His discourses on anatomy and physiological processes show his close observation which brought forth new facts. He maintained that the arteries contained blood, not air. He seldom dissected bodies. His writings formed the basis of all later medical works.
Heracleides of Tarentum (fl. c70 BCE)
He was the most famous of the Empirical physicians of his day. He made experiments on the properties of opium.
Herophilus of Chalcedon (First half of 4th C. BCE)
He was one of the great founders of medicine at Alexandria. He is best-known for his study of human anatomy based on human dissection. He opposed the belief of his day that veins originated in the liver. His studies of the genital organs, the eye, and the brain still survive in their Latin form.
He established that the brain, not the heart, was the centre of the nervous system. He made for the first time the distinction between the motor and sensory nerves. He believed that pulse beat was caused by the normal contraction and dilation of the arteries, but did not understand that blood flowed through the arteries because of the pumping action of the heart. He invented a portable water-clock to measure pulse beat. He had no knowledge of bacteria, believing that disease was caused by an imbalance of humours.
Hesire (or Hesy-Re) (????)
This ancient Chinese man was counted as one of the first physicians of the world and was called “Head of the dentists.”
Hicesius of Smyrna (fl. c60 BCE)
He wrote much on drugs and diet. He is noted for a special plaster.
Hippocrates (c460-c370 BCE)
His is the most famous name in Greek medicine. The “Hippocratic Corpus” contains about sixty medical treatises which he collected. The works cover anatomy, epidemiology, embryology, pharmacy, prognosis, surgery, and general health care.
Little is known of him. However, the attitudes seen in his writings and in his medical practice are attributed to him personally. The writings express the ethical ideals of a doctor. The Hippocratic Oath seems to have originated in a particular group of medical practitioners.
Hua T’o (c100-145 CE)
He was the leading surgeon of his time and highly revered in Chinese historical texts. He was the first to use anasthesia in surgical practice. One concotion that he used as a local anesthetic was a mixture of wine and hemp extract.
Huang Ti (c2700-2600 BCE)
He is said to be the author of a classic medical treatise, “Nei Ching Su Wen.” This book is recognized as being the oldest known written work on medicine. It teaches five basic therapeutic forms: acupuncture techniques, dietary control, pharmacological remedies, spiritual cures, and treatment of the respiratory and excretory systems. He emphasized the principle of preventive medicine.
An edition of the original work was compiled by Wang Ping in 762 CE and revised about 1200 CE. This later edition is the basis for the modern “Nei Ching,” which remains the foundation of today’s acupuncture.
Imhotep (c2650-?? BCE)
He was widely known in ancient Egypt as a physician of great medical knowledge. He was credited with saving the life of the wife of Pharaoh Khasekhem during childbirth but could not save his own wife in the same situation.
Mar Samuel (or Shmuel ben Abba Hakohen) (c180-c254 CE)
His medical pronouncements in the Talmud include anatomy, blood-letting, cardiology, dermatology, embryology, gastroenterology, genecology, general medicine, obstretics, ophthalmology, otolaryngology, pediatrics, therapeutics, toxicology, urology, and wound healing. The most famous of his remedies is his eye-salve. He was the most renowned physician in the Talmud.
Marinus (fl. c130 BCE)
He was an anatomist, who wrote books on anatomy, muscles, and the roots of nerves.
Menodorus (fl. c60 BCE)
He wrote drug recipes and some works on wounds of the head.
Molpis (fl. c175 BCE)
He was famous for his techniques of relief for dislocations.
Nefer (fl.c1525-1504 BCE)
He was a physician at the court of Pharaoh Amenophis I. He knew prescriptions and investigated diseases.
Nileus (fl. c200 BCE)
He was famous for his operative techniques in ophthalmology.
Nymphodorus (fl. c200 BCE)
He was noted for his combination of surgery with the use of drugs.
Pian Ch’iao of China (fl. c600 BCE)
He wrote a treatise on the pulse.
Praxagoris of Cos (fl. 320-280 BCE)
A physician, he was the first to draw a distinction between veins (which carried blood) and arteries (which carried air). He also did further work on theories of the pulse.
Rufus of Ephesus (70-?? CE)
He was a good anatomist, who described optic chiasma. He wrote on the pulse, showing that he may have understood the difference between diastole and systole. He wrote a treatise on the nomenclature of parts of the human body. He advocated a form of fever therapy and gave a description of plague.
Shen Nung (fl. c2850-2800 BCE)
He wrote “Pen-Tsao,” the first medical herbal text.
Soranus of Ephesus (98-138 CE)
Although he studied medicine in Alexandria and wrote in Greek, he was one of the most important physicians in Rome. He practised gynecology, obstretrics, and pediatrics. He was famous for his knowledge, observation, methodology, and sound judgment. He is considered the father of obstetrics.
His books deal diagnostics, fracture surgery, history of medicine, hygiene, methodology, nervous disorders, problems of terminology, and symptomology. His “Gynecology” tells of Roman belief regarding the female reproductive system, abortion, birth control, fertility, midwifery, and family planning. His opinions on women’s and infants’ care remained until the end of the Renaissance. He also described nervous disorders and their treatment.
Zhang Zhongjing (fl. 210 CE)
He was a famous physician near the end of the Han dynasty. He wrote several medical works, including “Shang Han Lun” (“Treatise on Being Affected by Cold”). This treatise has information about diseases caused by the pathogenic factor “han” (cold). He demonstrated how this can be diagnosed (especially pulse diagnosis) and from where it comes.