The Origin of the Use of Analgesia While Giving Birth

Analgesia was not an option while giving birth until the mid 19th century as pain was believed to be a crucial part of the birthing experience. In 1591, Euphemia Maclean, a woman from Edinburgh, Scotland requested analgesia during the birth of her twins and was burned at the stake for this request. Analgesia started with Queen Victoria who used chloroform for the birth of her 8th child Leopold. It was Victoria’s experience that she told to others which made the practice catch on so quickly as Victoria felt that analgesia was an amazing invention which helped her immensely. In the 1950’s, the no medication approach swung back into fashion with Dr. Grantly Dick-Read, the first modern physician to suggest against analgesia as he believed the pain of childbirth to be psychological

Botulism Toxin (Botox) Disabling Portions of the Human Brain Related to Emotion

Because human beings interpret emotions by mirroring one another, botulism toxin, more commonly referred to by the brand name “Botox”, when injected into the forehead, alters brain activity connected with various emotional states. The temporary paralysis of facial muscles from the use of Botox disables a person’s ability to mirror the person(s) they are interacting with. It also hinders their ability to read and interpret the facial expressions of others. Surprisingly, this information is being leveraged within studies of depression and patients diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, as it is believed that temporary paralysis of the forehead may help aid those who are experiencing clinical depression and/or a borderline personality disorder

The Ancient Roman Torture Method of the Roman Candle

The term “Roman Candle”, most commonly used within the fireworks industry, is in reference to a horrible execution method used most commonly by the Roman Emperor Nero. Nero would instruct his soldiers to forcibly coat the bodies of enemies and victims within pitch, oil, wax, and other flammable materials before lighting the feet of these victims to be used as human candles during formal parties, purposeful in its design to create the most prolonged and agonizing torture possible


The Google Term Most Searched the Week After September 11, 2001

Within the days following September 11, 2001, Google states that the keyword most heavily searched worldwide was “Nostradamus” in reference to French astrologer and mystic Michel de Nostredame, more commonly known by the name “Nostradamus”. de Nostredame is believed by some to have possessed supernatural abilities during his lifetime, specifically the ability to predict future calamitous events

The Japanese Concept of “Ubasute”

The Japanese term “ubasute” (pronounced “ooh-bah-suu-tay”) refers to “taking a person into the forest to leave them to die” and is a practice in Japan which has been imposed upon the elderly, sick, mentally ill, and disabled (e.g. blind, deaf, epilepsy etc.) during difficult periods when food resources have been scarce. This practice is referred to as “senicide” in English. It is unclear if this practice actually occurred throughout Japanese history, but the practice did occur within other cultures (e.g. Ancient Rome, India, Scandinavia etc.) which has led most experts to believe that the practice was more than mere mythology in Japan

The Most Important Intervention to Avoid Suicide During a Mental Health Crisis

In the U.S., most firearm related deaths are not homicides but rather suicides, and more people commit suicide by firearm then by all other methods combined. The timeframe of a suicidal crisis is typically 1 – 10 minutes in duration, and having a firearm at close reach increases the likelihood of a successful suicide attempt by 95%. If a firearm is not present during a moment of suicidal crisis, and another method is used to attempt suicide, this statistic plunges dramatically to become a 5% – 10% success rate. This is important as the means by which someone takes their life matters. Living in a firearm free home is a critically important aspect of suicide prevention for those who are at risk. It is recommended that during a crisis event, all firearms are unloaded and taken to a trusted friend, with all prescription, over the counter medications, and household poisons (eg. Draino etc.) locked away as well

The Argument Against Stem Cell Research and Why This Will No Longer be a Problem in the Future

The reason stem cell research is controversial for some is because it is viewed as damaging and harvesting from one life to help another. This argument may be obsolete in the future as scientists are now discovering ways to create stem cells from cells within the body (e.g. skin cells etc.). The traditional method to create a stem cell was to take a skin cell, remove the deoxyribonucleic acid from its nucleus, placing it into an egg which does not have deoxyribonucleic acid but is capable of changing deoxyribonucleic acid, turning it into a stem cell which has the patients genome ascribed unto it. The new method involves placing 4 genes into the nucleus of the skin cell and allowing time to pass, as the genes reorganize the deoxyribonucleic acid so that it begins to appear as stem cell deoxyribonucleic acid, which changes the skin cell and causes it to shrink, losing its outside, converting it into an embryonic stem cell with the only difference between this method and traditional embryonic stem cell creation method being that this technique contains the deoxyribonucleic acid of the patient it is being inserted into. The 4 genes inserted into the cell create 4 proteins which exist naturally within an egg. These proteins trigger the skin cell deoxyribonucleic acid to arrange itself identically to how it would within an embryonic stem cell. Scientists refer to this type of cell as “induced pluripotent stem cells”, commonly abbreviated as “IPS cells”. Ideally, scientists want induced pluripotent stem cells to function identically to natural embryonic stem cells, avoiding the creation of unwanted cells which can lead to cancer. Researchers have discovered that some laboratory created stem cells fail to carry out the task provided and worse yet, some cause cancer to develop. Scientists are currently pursuing 2 paths to alleviate this problem, the first being the attempt to develop induced pluripotent stem cells which function identically to natural embryonic stem cells and the second being to create a system to recognize which induced pluripotent stem cells will fail in an effort to exclude these cells from being inserted into the human body

The Myth of Python Snakes Strangling Prey

It is a myth that pythons suffocate their prey into submission and eventual death as they are technically causing obstructive shock of the circulatory system. This is performed by creating force pressure capable of exceeding the ability of the heart to compress, with this pressure focused tightly within the center of the heart, causing death as a direct result. As soon as pressure is elevated above what the heart utilizes to pump and eject blood throughout the circulatory system, the cardiac system becomes unable to eject blood causing prey to pass out within 10 – 20 seconds, similar in structure to how a headlock cuts off oxygen from the brain and causes a human opponent to pass out. As a python coils, it begins contracting its muscles to generate this tremendous crush pressure, referred to as “circumferential pressure”. To provide frame of reference, circumferential pressure is the type of pressure applied when a saturated cloth is rung out to expel all liquid. The blood pressure of prey typically doubles in stature after being constricted (e.g. moving from 120/80 to 250/160 to 300/200 over the course of 12.5 minutes), enough to cause syncope, a cerebral vascular accident, and death in most mammals. Sphygmomanometers typically exert 140 – 160 millimeters of mercury during a routine blood pressure examination, enough to cause blood perfusion to be cut off during measurement and pain to develop if the duration of the examination is extended for any reason. Python snakes are capable of applying 2x – 3x this rate of pressure, directly upon the neck or thorax of their prey. It is currently unknown if this ability can be increased when required (e.g. emergency situation of an animal escaping etc.)

The First U.S. Presidential Vaccine Mandate

U.S. President George Washington issued the first presidential vaccine mandate, requiring all soldiers within the continental army to become vaccinated against smallpox on February 5, 1777. 90% of deaths during the American Revolution were due to disease, with smallpox being the most prevalent and difficult pathogen for the military to control. Immunization was viewed as an achievable solution to a virtually insurmountable problem as death from smallpox plunged from 30% to 2% after a becomming immunized. Vaccination, or “variolation” as it was referred to during the era, was achieved by taking a small piece of an active smallpox sore from an infected person, and then introducing it to the person being inoculated via inhalation or by scratching their arm and introducing the virus by touch. The mandate, although initially detested, became highly successful in its pursuit of lowering soldier mortality rate, with 40,000 soldiers vaccinated by the end of 1777

The Tradition and Method of Selecting a New Pope

Murder, bribery, and nepotism were the primary ways in which a pope would enter or exit the papacy prior to the 12th century. It was during the 12th century that cardinals who were senior clergy in Rome, Italy created what they referred to as a “college” to act as a council which would regulate the elections of future popes. This system became referred to as the “conclave” which refers to the practice of a “private meeting assembly of cardinals for the election of a pope”. The term “conclave” was chosen because of the Latin term “con” with means “with” and the Latin term “clavin” which means “key”, more literally translating to “locked room” as cardinals would be locked away to avoid the interference of outside politics. As of 1274 A.D., all papal elections are held in secret, adhering to this strict tradition in an attempt to remain unbiased. Elections are held again and again until a 66% majority is achieved at which point white smoke is released to signify that the council has reached a decision. The election ballets from each voting round are burned so that the election is completely anonymous and private, even for those who are present in the meeting. It is this burning which creates the iconography of the smoke being released to signify a decision. In the Middle Ages, cardinals added damp straw to the ballots which created black smoke to signify that a pope had not yet been chosen. White smoke was created by burning the paper alone, but during the modern day, chemical additives are added to ensure the white smoke color is as unambiguous as possible