Coolpate Forehead Cooler

Coolpate Forehead Cooler

This home remedy was popular in the early 20th century. “Light as a feather and cool as the coolest spring,” it was billed as being indispensable for “Brainworkers, Students, Sportsmen and Those Vocations That Place Its Workers Under a Mental Stress.” Supposedly, this product increased blood circulation in the head

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Violet Ray

Violet Ray

Before the turn of the 20th century, Nikola Tesla was interested in the medical applications of high-frequency electricity and patented several objects for such an application. One object was the violet ray generator that used various electrodes to send high-frequency electricity into the user’s body. The device was used to

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Electricity is Life

Electricity is Life

The Electricity is Life machine could be found in arcades around the turn of the 20th century. People might pay a penny to cure their ailments such as “headaches, neuralgia, rheumatism, nervousness.” The machine generated an electric current when a person moved the handles. In addition to its supposed medical

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On Medical Material (De materia medica)

On Medical Material

Pedanius Dioscorides was a first-century physician traveling with the Roman army under Emperor Nero to places such as Italy, Gaul, Spain, and Greece. During his travels, he studied local plants, making note of their medicinal uses and adding extensively to the knowledge of plant use in medicine. When he finished

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Jarvik-7, First Successful Artificial Heart

Jarvik-7, First Successful Artificial Heart

First used in 1982, this device assists the heart in pumping blood and is powered by a separate air compressor outside of the body. The artificial heart attaches directly to the natural one. Named for its designer, Dr. Robert K. Jarvik, it was used as a permanent implant for five

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Perkins Tractors

Perkins Tractors

Connecticut physician Elisha Perkins developed “Perkins” tractors to cure a variety of ailments, such as rheumatism, gout, and inflammation. He theorized that these iron or brass pins, when drawn across the painful area, would ease discomfort. In 1796, Perkins applied for a U.S. patent for his tractors. That same year,

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Psychodiagnostic Plates (Psychodiagnostik Tafeln)

Psychodiagnostic Plates

In 1917, Swiss psychiatrist Hermann Rorschach tested his inkblot system, comprised of five color inkblot cards and five black and white cards. As they were shown each card, 300 patients and 100 control subjects were asked to respond while Rorschach wrote down their answers. Afterward, he showed patients the cards

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Vector EKG Wire-frame Models

Vector EKG Wire-frame Models

Otto Schmitt, a biophysicist at the University of Minnesota, is considered the father of biomedical engineering. Schmitt wanted to improve on the electrocardiograph (EKG), which measures electrical currents of the heart. As a result of his research in the late 1940s and 1950s, he created a way to represent a

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Electric Bitters

  “You are feeling depressed, your appetite is poor, you are bothered with headache, you are fidgety, and nervous, and generally out of sorts, and want to brace up… What you want is an alternative that will purify your blood, start healthy action of liver and kidneys, restore your vitality,

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