Sunday, July 29, 2012

Recommended Read: Bad Medicine

Bad Medicine: Doctor Doing Hard Since Hippocrates - David Wootton

A powerful and very easy to read history of medicine which argues that there was little benefit to medicine prior to the 1850s and the discovery of germ theory.  Wootton presents potted histories of doctors, medication, treatment, research and failure.  He shows how the inherent conservatism of the medical profession prevented it from embracing new treatments and concepts as they were discovered.  Likewise, any new discovery was perceived as a threat to the privileged status of doctors.  Wootton has a gift for presenting complicated concepts in a way that makes them very easy to understand.  This book concludes with a good summation of how medicine since the 1850s has been of great benefit to humanity.  I really found this book interesting.