Timeline History

Medical History Timeline Upto 1900

Year Medical Discovery / Inventions medical articles / thesis
Famous Births/Deaths Medical Equipments Medical Events
Upto 1000 Persian physician Rhazes is the first to identify smallpox, as distinguished from measles, and to suggest blood as the cause of infectious disease. (910)   Birth of Hippocrates, Greek physician and founder of the first university. Considered the father of medicine. (460 BCE)            
1001-1600   Dutch lens grinder Zacharius Jannssen invents the microscope (1590)      
1601-1700 Anton van Leeuwenhoek refines the microscope and fashions nearly 500 models. Discovers blood cells and observes animal and plant tissues and microorganisms.(1670) William Harvey publishes An Anatomical Study of the Motion of the Heart and of the Blood in Animals, describing how blood is pumped throughout the body by the heart, and then returns to the heart and recirculates.(1628)    
1701-1800 James Lind , a Scottish naval surgeon, discovers that citrus fruits prevent scurvy. (1747)

Edward Jenner develops a method to protect people from smallpox by exposing them to the cowpox virus. (1796)

Sir Humphry Davy announces the anesthetic properties of nitrous oxide, although dentists do not begin using the gas as an anesthetic for almost 45 years. (1800)
mercury thermometer, by Gabriel Fahrenheit (1714)      
1801-1850 British obstetrician James Blundell performs the first successful transfusion of human blood. (1818)

Dr. Horace Wells, American dentist, uses nitrous oxide as an anesthetic.(1844)

Waldo Hanchett patented the dental chair. (1848)
Birth of William Osler (1849)(called the "Father of Modern Medicine" ) René Laënnec invents the stethoscope. (1816)

endoscope, by Pierre Segalas (1827)
Elizabeth Blackwell is the first woman to receive a medical degree (from Geneva Medical College in Geneva, New York). (1849)      
1851-1860 Louis Pasteur suggests in a paper that microorganisms may cause many human and animal diseases.(1859) Death of John Snow (1858)(anaesthetist and pioneer epidemiologist who studied cholera ) hypodermic syringe, invented by Alexander Wood (1853)      
1861-1870 Louis Pasteur and Robert Koch establish the germ theory of disease. According to germ theory, a specific disease is caused by a specific organism. Before this discovery, most doctors believe diseases are caused by spontaneous generation. In fact, doctors would perform autopsies on people who died of infectious diseases and then care for living patients without washing their hands, not realizing that they were therefore transmitting the disease. (1870) Joseph Lister publishes Antiseptic Principle of the Practice of Surgery, one of the most important developments in medicine. Lister was convinced of the need for cleanliness in the operating room, a revolutionary idea at the time. He develops antiseptic surgical methods, using carbolic acid to clean wounds and surgical instruments. The immediate success of his methods leads to general adoption. In one hospital that adopts his methods, deaths from infection decrease from nearly 60% to just 4% (1867) Death of Ignaz Semmelweis(1865) (a pioneer of avoiding cross-infection , introduced hand washing and instrument cleaning )      
1871-1880 George Green patented the first electric dental drill.(1875)

First vaccine for cholera (1879)
1881-1890 First vaccine for anthrax (1881)

First vaccine for rabies (1882)

Aspirin was patented by Felix Hoffmann (March 6, 1889)

Emil von Behring discovers antitoxins and uses them to develop tetanus and diphtheria vaccines. (1890)
contact lens invented by Adolf Frick (1887)      
1891-1900 First vaccine for typhoid fever. (1896)

First vaccine for plague. (1897)

Felix Hoffman develops aspirin (acetyl salicylic acid). The juice from willow tree bark had been used as early as 400 BC to relieve pain. 19th century scientists knew that it was the salicylic acid in the willow that made it work, but it irritated the lining of the mouth and stomach. Hoffman synthesizes acetyl salicylic acid, developing what is now the most widely used medicine in the world. (1899)

Different blood grouping discovered
Dr Ronald Ross reported in the British Medical Journal his discovery of malaria cysts in the stomach wall of Anopheles mosquitoes that had fed on a malaria patient. (1897) Birth of Wilder Penfield(1891) (pioneer in neurology ) Willem Einthoven distinguished five different phases (deflections) of electrical current shown in a electrocardiogram, which he named P, Q, R, S and T. (1895)

German physicist Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen discovers X rays. (1895)
Year Medical Discovery / Inventions medical articles / thesis
Famous Births/Deaths Medical Equipments Medical Events

Medical History Timeline 2001-Present

Medical History Timeline 1901-1910

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