Burnout in physicians

Increasing numbers of doctors are experiencing burnout now more than ever before and the worrying part is that what we see is just the tip of the iceberg. Burnout, a state of mental exhaustion caused by the doctor’s professional life, is characterised by emotional exhaustion, depersonalisation and a reduced sense of accomplishment or success. Burnout has been largely ignored or under-recognised previously.

Plague, pox and the physician in Aberdeen, 1495–1516

This article discusses responses to disease in Aberdeen during a formative period in the provision of healthcare within the city. The foundation of King’s College was followed, in 1497, by the establishment of the first royally endowed university Chair of Medicine in the British Isles, and its first incumbent, James Cumming, was employed by the local government as the first city doctor in 1503.

Alexander Gordon (1752–99) and his writing: insights into medical thinking in the late eighteenth century

Alexander Gordon’s writing reveals nascent ideas about infectious disease, tensions in medical thinking in the time of the Enlightenment, but also a practice of medicinal therapy that resonates with that of the present day. His Treatise on the Epidemic Puerperal Fever contained observations and deductions which provided, for the first time, compelling evidence of the contagious mode of transmission of the infection by medical attendants.