Post Mortem: Solving History’s Great Medical Mysteries

By on January 18, 2015

Not sure why I bought this book, particularly since I bought it in hardcover. I usually buy books in the Kindle Store, maybe a PDF, but I never buy books in hardcover. The only thing I can figure is that I passed by one of those displays with hundreds of remaindered books in a grocery store, and I thought this book would be interesting. Then I let it sit for a few years to age it like wine. LOL. Well, this book is extremely interesting, even if it isn’t the Patricia Cornwell novel.

Ever wonder what killed Alexander the Great? It wasn’t an arrow or spear or anything so dramatic, but illness.  Or what killed Herod the Great? What about Mozart? Beethoven? Washington Carver?

This book traces 3,500 years of the medical history from the perspective of what contemporary physicians thought about the diseases of their renowned patients and how they might have treated them. It describes the characteristics of the illnesses in question, and brings to life the medical history, social history, family history, and physical examination of their famous victims.

Then the author sifts through the medical evidence, testing a wide range of diagnostic theories against the known facts and today’s best scientific research, to arrive at the diagnosis most consistent with the illness described in the historic record.

Yeah, it’s pretty cool.  Not for the squeamish, but then I’ve been known to watch operations on TV while eating a bowl of cereal.

Check it out in the Kindle Store: Post Mortem: Solving History’s Great Medical Mysteries

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