MEDICINE OF THE RENAISSANCE PERIOD
The Renaissance revolutionized medical thought as it did all scientific, artistic, and other intellectual activity. The dissemination of knowledge was greatly aided by the development of printing. Andreas Vesalius, born in Brussels, was a professor of anatomy in Padua, where he wrote De Humani Corporis Fabrica (On the Fabric of the Human Body, 1543). This work was the first accurate anatomy text and included masterful illustrations that corrected errors of Galen. Vesalius was the first of a line of superb anatomists at Padua, among whom were Hieronymus Fabricius and Gabriel Fallopius.
Ambroise ParŽ, a French physician, revolutionized surgery. He treated his patients humanely, using ligatures to stop bleeding from vessels instead of cauterizing them with boiling oil or hot instruments. Other men of this age included Aureolus Paracelsus, a Swiss physician who rejected traditional schools of thought and advocated the use of such chemicals as laudanum (a preparation of opium) in the treatment of disease. Girolamo Fracastoro, an Italian physician, is best known for his work on syphilis and other infectious diseases.