Who Discovered Anesthesia?
Posted In: Science.
History have shown that many ancient civilization had attempted to produce a chemical similar in nature to that of modern day anesthesia. Records of such attempts have been found from the writings of ancient Sumerians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Egyptians, Romans, Greeks, Indians, and Chinese. Further evidences were apparent especially during the middle ages.
The Islamic Golden Age
The middle ages is also widely known as the Islamic Golden Age largely due to the contributions made by Muslim scientists, intellectuals, engineers, philosophers and even poets to the progress of science, technology and sociology. The Europeans too contributed a lot to the discovery and development of science and technology as well.
The Scientific Revolution period
In fact, during the European Scientific Revolution period, various discoveries on the science of the human anatomy and surgical techniques were made, which helped to advance the medical science and knowledge to a great extent. Surgical procedures to treat various types of diseases were developed. However, these surgical procedures were very painful and many patients would disagree to any form of surgery simply because of the pain is unbearable. Scientists, physicians and chemists from that time began to develop ways to reduce the pain, which eventually resulted in the discovery of anesthesia.
It took many discoveries
Although no records have been found on who actually discovered anesthesia but most historians believe that the scientific and medical society from the late 18th and early 19th centuries were probably the ones that lead to the discovery of what we will know as the modern day anesthesia. The modern day anesthesia as we know it can either be local or general anesthesia. Local anesthesia targets a specific part of the body while general anesthesia means the whole body.
The first procedure of general anesthesia
The term “anesthesia” was coined by Oliver Wendell Holmes, an American intellectual and physician in 1846. William Thomas Green Morton was the first physician to publicly demonstrate the procedure of general anesthesia on October 16th, 1846.