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RING OF FIRE

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What is a historical fact of daily life that a few will believe?

Let’s be real for a moment: the Middle Ages were a wild time, especially when it came to medicine. I mean, we’re talking about a period where if you had hemorrhoids, you weren’t just handed some soothing cream and sent on your way. Oh no, you were in for a treat… and by treat, I mean a literal nightmare.

Picture this: You’ve got a painful hemorrhoid situation going on. You head to your local healer, hoping for some relief. And what’s their solution? They whip out a boiling iron and decide to burn each of those bad boys off. Yep, you heard that right. Boiling. Iron. On your rear end. Talk about a hot seat.

But wait, there’s more. If you thought that was the pinnacle of medieval medical madness, think again. Hemorrhoids in those times were often dubbed “St. Fiacre’s curse.” And who was St. Fiacre, you ask? The patron saint of hemorrhoid sufferers. That’s right, they had a saint for that. Some folks even believed sitting on a specific stone (which St. Fiacre apparently sat on) would cure them. If that didn’t work, well, out came the cautery irons or, in some extreme cases, physicians would try to yank them off with their bare hands. Ouch.

Thankfully, by the 12th century, there was a glimmer of hope. Jewish physician Moses Maimonides penned a treatise on hemorrhoids, recommending something quite familiar to us today: a sitz bath. Simple, soothing, and sans any scalding metal.

So, next time you’re feeling down about a trip to the doctor, just remember: at least you’re not getting the medieval treatment.

2 COMMENTS

  1. So we have advanced from medieval times-
    1949 Nobel prize for medicine- The development of the pre-frontal lobotomy
    2023 Nobel prize for medicine- the development of mrna vaccines which at best were useless and at worst lethal
    Second highest cause of death in the US-iatrogenesis
    And I could go on.

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