The origins of sport for disabled people


The disabled sports movement is considered to have started in 1948 when, under the aegis of Ludwig Guttmann, England hosted the first wheelchair games at Stoke Mandeville Hospital. In this review, we challenge the assumption that sport for disabled people started after the Second World War and contend that it was already practised in an organised fashion in France, Germany and the UK before and after the First World War.

Are medical eponyms really dying out? A study of their usage in the historical biomedical literature

Eponyms are a prominent feature of medical language. Many feel they have had their time and serve only to complicate medical education and conversation. Others argue that eponyms can make unmemorable concepts memorable, can concisely label complex concepts, and promote a valuable interest in medical history.

Maternity records in Edinburgh and Aberdeen in 1936: a comparison

Historians have long used maternity records to understand the evolution of maternity services. More recently, epidemiologists have become interested in obstetric hospital records as a source of data (e.g. birth weight, social class), to study the influence of early life on future health and disease: life course epidemiology. Edinburgh and Aberdeen are unusual in holding detailed records from several maternity institutions.

A story of heartache: the understanding of angina pectoris in the pre-surgical period

This paper traces the understanding of angina pectoris over two centuries from its first description by William Heberden, emphasising the Scottish dimension in this process. Such a retrospect is appropriate at a time when natural disasters in several parts of the world are drawing attention to their effect in increasing the incidence of heart attacks.

Cost and value in medical education – what we can learn from the past?

What lessons can be learned from the history of cost and value in medical education? First, the issue of cost and value in medical education has been around for a long time. Rising costs and an economic recession have made us focus on the subject more, but the issue has been just below the surface for over 200 years. A problem like this will not go away by itself – we must tackle it now. Second, the history of cost and value in medical education makes us look critically at who should pay. Should it be students, institutions or governments?

The history of psychiatry: personal reflections

Does an engagement with the history of psychiatry benefit the practising clinician? This paper adopts a personal perspective. It sketches the ideological conflicts which have raged in the study of the history of psychiatry in recent decades and looks at the often heated debates between historians and psychiatrists on the subject. It looks at the author’s involvement with the subject and considers how this may have influenced both clinical practice and the approach to history.