- Hippocrates

The topic I worked on came to my mind due to the experience during an exam, when one of my colleagues was being examined. Parasitic diseases were on the programme when the examiner gave a hint that the causative agent of the disease is coincidentally part of one of the most well-known features of medicine. It was also said that it was a high school biology curriculum and that a medical student should know. At that moment, I remembered biology classes at our grammar school, where our teacher actually told us. However, as almost all teachers have been telling us for a few years now, there is nothing that works a hundred percent in Medicine. And the medical sign itself is no exception. In general, we come across two different views, which can be explained in several ways. Some will say that there is certainly a snake in the image of Asclepius / Aeskulapus (for example, this is certainly the case in prescription forms), while others will believe that it is indeed a Guinea worm (Dracunculus medinensis). In the ideal case, the Herme's cane (winged, with two snakes facing each other) is also involved, which is often mistaken for a symbol of Medicine. And the variant mentioned by the authors of some medical textbooks cannot be ruled out, which is that it has always been a Guinea worm, once someone misinterpreted it, and since then more people, at least from the general public, have leaned towards a snake. What are the probable reasons for each theory? As for the serpent, the basis for this version will probably be the saying that the god Asclepius once saved an important king who was bitten by a serpent, and snakes were kept in Asclepius' temples in honor of the incident. There is also a more pragmatic view of the matter, which works with the theory that already in ancient Greece, snake venom was perhaps used for curative purposes, and the snakes were thus in the temples (which could serve as hospitals and medical schools at the same time). For religious people, it is possible to mention a theory based on the biblical symbolism of the Book of Numbers. The theory of the Guinea worm points out that in the traditional treatment of the so-called dracunculosis, a special technique of gradual winding of the parasite on a stick is used. This technique requires considerable experience and feeling so that the parasite does not rupture and does not remain in the patient's body. In local conditions, folk healers have such abilities, and therefore are treated with due respect. As an example of the healing art, this healing act could become a symbol of Medicine.

I have decided here that I will try to somehow process this certain duality of one of the basic symbols of medicine, and thus create a kind of hybrid of a well-known sign, which would indicate that we cannot be completely sure of its origin. I am aware that this topic has no worldwide overlap, however, it is perhaps a piece of history and symbolism, and it also relates to a memory that I have kept quite vividly in my memory.

" /> - Hippocrates

The topic I worked on came to my mind due to the experience during an exam, when one of my colleagues was being examined. Parasitic diseases were on the programme when the examiner gave a hint that the causative agent of the disease is coincidentally part of one of the most well-known features of medicine. It was also said that it was a high school biology curriculum and that a medical student should know. At that moment, I remembered biology classes at our grammar school, where our teacher actually told us. However, as almost all teachers have been telling us for a few years now, there is nothing that works a hundred percent in Medicine. And the medical sign itself is no exception. In general, we come across two different views, which can be explained in several ways. Some will say that there is certainly a snake in the image of Asclepius / Aeskulapus (for example, this is certainly the case in prescription forms), while others will believe that it is indeed a Guinea worm (Dracunculus medinensis). In the ideal case, the Herme's cane (winged, with two snakes facing each other) is also involved, which is often mistaken for a symbol of Medicine. And the variant mentioned by the authors of some medical textbooks cannot be ruled out, which is that it has always been a Guinea worm, once someone misinterpreted it, and since then more people, at least from the general public, have leaned towards a snake. What are the probable reasons for each theory? As for the serpent, the basis for this version will probably be the saying that the god Asclepius once saved an important king who was bitten by a serpent, and snakes were kept in Asclepius' temples in honor of the incident. There is also a more pragmatic view of the matter, which works with the theory that already in ancient Greece, snake venom was perhaps used for curative purposes, and the snakes were thus in the temples (which could serve as hospitals and medical schools at the same time). For religious people, it is possible to mention a theory based on the biblical symbolism of the Book of Numbers. The theory of the Guinea worm points out that in the traditional treatment of the so-called dracunculosis, a special technique of gradual winding of the parasite on a stick is used. This technique requires considerable experience and feeling so that the parasite does not rupture and does not remain in the patient's body. In local conditions, folk healers have such abilities, and therefore are treated with due respect. As an example of the healing art, this healing act could become a symbol of Medicine.

I have decided here that I will try to somehow process this certain duality of one of the basic symbols of medicine, and thus create a kind of hybrid of a well-known sign, which would indicate that we cannot be completely sure of its origin. I am aware that this topic has no worldwide overlap, however, it is perhaps a piece of history and symbolism, and it also relates to a memory that I have kept quite vividly in my memory.

" /> - Hippocrates

The topic I worked on came to my mind due to the experience during an exam, when one of my colleagues was being examined. Parasitic diseases were on the programme when the examiner gave a hint that the causative agent of the disease is coincidentally part of one of the most well-known features of medicine. It was also said that it was a high school biology curriculum and that a medical student should know. At that moment, I remembered biology classes at our grammar school, where our teacher actually told us. However, as almost all teachers have been telling us for a few years now, there is nothing that works a hundred percent in Medicine. And the medical sign itself is no exception. In general, we come across two different views, which can be explained in several ways. Some will say that there is certainly a snake in the image of Asclepius / Aeskulapus (for example, this is certainly the case in prescription forms), while others will believe that it is indeed a Guinea worm (Dracunculus medinensis). In the ideal case, the Herme's cane (winged, with two snakes facing each other) is also involved, which is often mistaken for a symbol of Medicine. And the variant mentioned by the authors of some medical textbooks cannot be ruled out, which is that it has always been a Guinea worm, once someone misinterpreted it, and since then more people, at least from the general public, have leaned towards a snake. What are the probable reasons for each theory? As for the serpent, the basis for this version will probably be the saying that the god Asclepius once saved an important king who was bitten by a serpent, and snakes were kept in Asclepius' temples in honor of the incident. There is also a more pragmatic view of the matter, which works with the theory that already in ancient Greece, snake venom was perhaps used for curative purposes, and the snakes were thus in the temples (which could serve as hospitals and medical schools at the same time). For religious people, it is possible to mention a theory based on the biblical symbolism of the Book of Numbers. The theory of the Guinea worm points out that in the traditional treatment of the so-called dracunculosis, a special technique of gradual winding of the parasite on a stick is used. This technique requires considerable experience and feeling so that the parasite does not rupture and does not remain in the patient's body. In local conditions, folk healers have such abilities, and therefore are treated with due respect. As an example of the healing art, this healing act could become a symbol of Medicine.

I have decided here that I will try to somehow process this certain duality of one of the basic symbols of medicine, and thus create a kind of hybrid of a well-known sign, which would indicate that we cannot be completely sure of its origin. I am aware that this topic has no worldwide overlap, however, it is perhaps a piece of history and symbolism, and it also relates to a memory that I have kept quite vividly in my memory.

" />

Art Competition da MEDici

The Medical Students’ Association (Spolek mediků), the Brno branch of IFMSA CZ and MIMSA together with the Faculty of Medicine of MU announce an ART COMPETITION da MEDici for all students, alumni and employess of the Faculty of Medicine, Masaryk University. Thirteen winning artworks will be featured in the wall calendar of the Faculty for the year 2022 or used for further promotion of the Faculty.

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