Skip Navigation LinksHome > April 15, 2013 - Volume 38 - Issue 8 > Paulus Aegineta: Review of Spine-Related Chapters in “Epitom...
doi: 10.1097/BRS.0b013e3182760fa0
Historical Perspective

Paulus Aegineta: Review of Spine-Related Chapters in “Epitomoe Medicoe Libri Septem”

Er, Uygur MD*; Naderi, Sait MD

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Study Design. Analysis of chapters related to spinal fractures and dislocations of an important medical book from medieval age. A historical study.

Objective. To present the sections on spinal fractures and dislocations in the treatise of Paulus Aegineta or Paul of Aegina, and to discuss their relationship with preceding and subsequent literature.

Summary of Background Data. Paul of Aegina was influenced by precedent great authors and provided a significant link in the transmission of the surgical knowledge to present day via the prominent physicians of Islamic golden age.

Methods. The edition on which this study is based was translated from Greek into English by Francis Adams and was published in 1846 by The Sydenham Society in London in 3 volumes. The related sections were examined and compared with the treatises of earlier and subsequent writers.

Results. Although Paul of Aegina was influenced by Hippocrates, Celsus, and Galen, he also put forward his own opinions. The most prominent representatives of the Islamic Golden Age, Rhazes, Albucasis, Avicenna, and Haly Abas were influenced by Paul of Aegina.

Conclusion. Paul of Aegina, who was the last representative of the Byzantine School, compiled approximately 1000 years of medical knowledge up to his own era. By taking on this task, he provided a significant link in the transmission of ancient knowledge to later generations. He is also considered as a bridge between Western and Eastern medicines as he conveyed medical knowledge of the ancient era to Islamic authors.

© 2013 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.

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