List of publications in medicine

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De Materia Medica

Author: Pedanius Dioscorides
Publication data: De Materia Medica, 5070
Online version: Online version of first volume
Description: This five-volume work was a precursor to all modern pharmacopeias. In fact, it remained in use until about 1600, though with some additional commentary and additions from Arabian and Indian sources.
Importance: Topic creator, Breakthrough, Impact

The Canon of Medicine

Author: Avicenna (Ibn Sina)
Publication data: The Canon of Medicine, 9801027
Description: This fourteen-volume medical encyclopedia was the first of its kind and remained the most popular medical textbook in both Europe and the Islamic world up until the 17th century. Among other things, the book is known for the introduction of systematic experimentation and quantification into the study of physiology,[1] and the discovery of contagious diseases.[2]
Importance: Topic creator, Breakthrough, Impact

The Principles and Practice of Medicine: Designed for the Use of Practitioners and Students of Medicine

Author: William Osler
Publication data:
Online version:
Description: First published in 1892 while Osler was Professor of Medicine at Johns Hopkins University, this textbook was, in its time, translated into French, German, Russian, Portuguese, Spanish and Chinese. It became the most significant medical textbook of the next 40 years.
Importance: Impact

Recent studies

Mortality in relation to smoking: 50 years' observation on male British doctors

Authors: R. Doll, R. Peto, J. Boreham, I. Sutherland
Publication data: BMJ 2004;328:1519–33.
Description: This is the British doctors study. A prospective clinical trial which has been running from 1951 to 2001, and in 1956 provided convincing statistical evidence that tobacco smoking increases the risk of lung cancer.
Importance: Impact

Randomized trial of cholesterol lowering in 4444 patients with coronary heart disease: the Scandinavian Simvastatin Survival Study

Authors: The Scandinavian Simvastatin Survival Study Group.
Publication data: Lancet 1994;344:1383–1389
Description: The Scandinavian Simvastatin Survival Study (also known under the abbreviation 4S) is a multicenter clinical trial that was performed in the 1990s in Scandinavia. The objective of the study was to assess the effect of a cholesterol-lowering drug called simvastatin on mortality and morbidity in group of 4444 patients with coronary heart disease, aged between 35 and 70 years. The patients presented with moderate hypercholesterolemia between 5.5 and 8.0 mmol/L. The results of the trial showed that simvastatin had a lowering effect on mortality and morbidity of patients suffering from coronary heart disease.
Importance: Impact

Heart Protection Study

Authors: Medical Research Council
Online version: Research site
Description: The Heart Protection Study is a large randomized controlled trial by the Medical Research Council (MRC) in the United Kingdom. It studies the use of statin (simvastatin 40 mg) medication and vitamin supplementation (vitamin E, vitamin C and beta carotene) in patients that are at risk for cardiovascular disease.
Importance: Impact

Publications in Medicine by field


Prophylactic implantation of a defibrillator in patients with myocardial infarction and reduced ejection fraction

Authors: Moss AJ, Zareba W, Hall WJ, Klein H, Wilber DJ, Cannom DS, Daubert JP, Higgins SL, Brown MW, Andrews ML; Multicenter Automatic Defibrillator Implantation Trial II Investigators.
Publication data: N Engl J Med. 2002 Mar 21;346(12):877-83. Epub 2002 Mar 19. (MADIT 2)
Description: This study shows that anyone with coronary heart disease and decreased ejection fraction should receive an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator. Applying the recommendation threatens to bankrupt the entire health care industry of the United States with its cost burden the government (a one-time cost of > $250 billion, with yearly expenditures of about 10% of that).
Importance: Impact


Pancreatic extracts in the treatment of diabetes mellitus

Author: Banting FG, Best CH, Collip JB, Campbell WR, Fletcher AA
Publication data: Canadian Medical Association Journal 1922;12:141-146.
Online version: Online version
Description: Banting and Best proved the existence of the hypothetical pancreatic substance termed "insulin" by Sharpey-Schafer.
Importance: Topic creator, Breakthrough, Impact

Diabetes mellitus: its differentiation into insulin-sensitive and insulin-insensitive types.

Author: Himsworth HP
Publication data: Lancet 1936;i:127-130.
Online version:
Description: Himsworth noted that there are two main types of diabetes, the insulin-depleted (type 1) and the insulin-resistant form (type 2). Insulin resistance is a term and concept of his coinage.
Importance: Breakthrough, Impact

Other Fields

See also


  1. Katharine Park (March 1990). "Avicenna in Renaissance Italy: The Canon and Medical Teaching in Italian Universities after 1500 by Nancy G. Siraisi", The Journal of Modern History 62 (1), p. 169-170.

    "Students of the history of medicine know him for his attempts to introduce systematic experimentation and quantification into the study of physiology".

  2. George Sarton, Introduction to the History of Science.
    (cf. Dr. A. Zahoor and Dr. Z. Haq (1997). Quotations From Famous Historians of Science, Cyberistan.)

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