The management of renal stones in the Ratio medendi in nosocomio practico (Medical skills in hospital practice) of Anton De Haen (1704-1776)

Abstract

The purpose of this paper is to report the methods used and the experiments conducted by doctor Antonius De Haen mentioned in his masterpiece “Ratio Medendi in Nosocomio Practico” “Medical skills in hospital practice”, to put his knowledge in the proper context of the time and explain his intuitions with the modern evidence in medical research. The book is written during his experience in the 18th century Viennese hospital, it contains numerous case histories and ranges widely over what must have been all the recognized clinical entities of the time.

Among the different topics covered, there is a chapter dedicated to “Experimenta in calculosis et de calcula varia” “Experiments in the calculosis and types of stones”. In it there is a series of case studies of renal stones he followed that reveal the limits of the knowledge of the time. There is a punctual description of various consistencies and differences in the way of formation of the calculi and he frequently includes the results of his autopsies in his researches.

In fact, the author is asking himself how is possible that many men lead their lives, without the perception of the presence of the kidney stones, which often only appear post-mortem. Anton De Haen says in his script: “Nature itself provides insensibility to pain even before the resources of medical art, such as limewater or Uva Ursi”. How Uva Ursi works is one of the unsolved question for the author, now we can finally explain how Uva ursi leaves and his nutrient have an antioxidant potential, how they attack the target bacterial cells, their quorum sensing communication systems and the direct antimicrobial growth-inhibitory activity and the safety of his use in the clinical practice.

Keywords: Anton de Haen, 18th century, Uva ursi, kidney stones, hydroquinone.

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Ci spiace, ma questo articolo è disponibile soltanto in Inglese Americano.

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