Medicine through time

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How far and in what ways have science and technology contributed to medical advances in the 20th Century?

Learning Outcomes:

* To identify the advances in research, diagnosis and treatment of disease due to scientific technology: CT, MRI, ultrasound scans, radiotherapy.
* To identify possible risks and negative consequences of the use of science and technology in medicine.

Video starter: Surgery of the Future


Title: Surgery of the future

Duration: 04:26

Description: Surgery has changed due to different techniques of seeing inside the body and has moved from simple x-rays to magnetic resonance machines and minature cameras. This has enabled surgery to be less intrusive with quicker recovery times. It turns to look at the future and believes that there will be a 'step back' to home-based treatment, but asks the question, what of the cost?

From BBC Class Clips

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Read through this detailed site on new technology and medicine.

Note your thoughts about the advantages and disadvantages of new technologies on this collaborative page.

Look at the images below. For each one make a note of the way in which the technology has helped or hindered peoples healthcare.


N0010213 Credit Wellcome Photo Library, Wellcome Images
Magnetic resonance imaging equipment

Photograph of female radiographer positioning
patient at entrance to magnetic chamber, circa
1985 Common name: MRI scanning
Magnetic resonance imaging
Collection: Wellcome Images
Library reference no.: NMSB Frame No 11499


N0029235 Credit Ilianski, Wellcome Images
LightSpeed CT scanner.
Photograph 2005
N0012222 Credit Wellcome Photo Library, Wellcome Images
Ultrasound scanning, ophthalmology
Ultrasound and scanner
Ultrasound scanning, ophthalmology
Collection: Wellcome Images
Library reference no.: NMSB Frame No NOVIDEO
B0002353 Credit: Wellcome Library, London
Instument used in keyhole surgery
Instrument used in kehole surgery.
Collection: Wellcome Images
Library reference no.: Contributor Reference C834


B0003692 Credit Darren Hopes, Wellcome Images
Creating humans for spare parts
Composite artwork to illustrate the fear that
human beings may be created as source of organs
for transplantation.
Collection: Wellcome Images
Library reference no.: Contributor Reference BODY1
B0004644 Credit: Wellcome Library, London
Test tube baby
Test tube baby on conveyor belt.
Photograph 2002
Collection: Wellcome Images
All images are from the Welcome Library. These are available under a Creative Commons Licence, the full terms of which can be found here. A summary of he terms is: Under the terms of the Creative Commons Licence, anyone is free to copy, distribute, and display the image, providing that the image is fully attributed to Wellcome Images and used solely for non-commercial purposes. The terms specifically state that 'This includes making printed copies of such materials for students and promoting and making such teaching materials available in electronic form.'






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