Discoveries and advancements keep taking place in the field of science and technology. The purpose of every advancement and invention is to make people’s life easier and comfortable. Medicine is the field of science where tremendous discoveries are taking place. Each new medical advancement raises the hope of life.
There are numerous diseases which were thought incurable in the past and they had been the reason for the death of a huge population. But with improvements in medical facilities and with discoveries, the cure of those diseases has become possible. An example is Cancer. Man is becoming more civilized with time. He is discovering new theories and is trying to unveil the secrets of the world.
If you are interested in finding out the most important medical discoveries that took place in history, this article can be useful for you.
Most Important Medical Discoveries in History
The most important medical discoveries in history are as follows:-
1. Anaesthesia (1846)
Anaesthesia was discovered by William T.G. Morton in October 1846 when he successfully used ether for anaesthetizing a patient who required surgery for the removal of his vascular tumour. The newly discovered substance was later named as “Chloroform” which was a very quick-acting substance. It had been used widely in the early centuries but soon was declared as a high-risk substance as certain deaths occurred due to it. Over one and a half-century later, improved anaesthesia was developed which was safer to use. Today, numerous pain-free and life-saving operations are being performed by the use of anaesthesia.
2. Antibiotics (1928)
In 1928, penicillin was discovered by Alexander Fleming in London. This discovery introduced the world with a compound named “antibiotics”. This new finding brought a huge revolution in the field of medicine. Antibiotics can inhibit as well as kill various microbial species. Hence, they tremendously decreased the number of fatalities caused due to infections.
3. Cardiac Pacemaker (1950)
This amazing invention was discovered in 1950 by John Hopps who was a Canadian engineer. John Hopps discovered that if the heart fails to beat due to a fall in its temperature, we can restart it artificially by the help of electrical or mechanical stimulation. This will make the heart work and beat again. This research served as a foundation in the development of the first pacemaker. The cardiac pacemakers used today are much more advanced and better than the initial one and they normally come with a battery life of about twenty years.
4. Transplantation of Organs (1954)
Organ transplantation plays an important role in the field of medicine. Transplantation of organs first took place in 1954 when a kidney was transplanted successfully. Following this, the first liver transplantation was held in 1967 and that of the heart in 1968. Today, numerous organs are transplanted safely including liver, pancreas, lung, kidney, intestine and others.
5. Immunotherapy (1970)
Immunotherapy was discovered by William B. Coley in the late 19th century. He injected stagnant bacteria (Serratia marcescens and Streptococcus progenies) inside the cancerous tumours. In certain types of malignancies, Coley attained remissions in a few of the patients. However, actual progress in immunotherapy took place in the last four decades. In 2010, the first cancer vaccine got authorization by the FDA. In the last ten years, immune-oncology has emerged as one of the most comprehensive cancer therapies.
6. Surrogacy Parenthood
Surrogacy parenthood or maternidad subrogada is another great invention of, modern medical science that brings the solution to intended childless couples as well as an intended single parent. In this process eggs and sperms collect from intended parents or from donor then fertilize in IVF or test tube and place in the uterus of the surrogate mother. After the birth of the surrogacy baby, it will handover to the baby’s biological parents. So many women have physical issues including infertility, heart daises, uterus cancer etc that restricted them from pregnancy and giving birth babies. Surrogacy brings the solution to them. Surrogacy first invented in the USA in 1936 but got success in 1944.
Over time, new advancements and discoveries are taking place in the field of medicine which is a moment of joy for almost all human beings. With the increase in medical advancements, life expectancy is also increasing. When we overview the history of medicine, we see great advancements and inventions which kept changing over time. Each discovery comes with betterment and improvement in the previous one. Some of the important discoveries that took place in history include organ transplantation, X-ray imaging, immunotherapy, antibiotics, stethoscopes, AI and others. We hope that new advancements and discoveries will be taking place in the future as well.