56 Strange Medical Practices In History

Uncategorized | March 7, 2019

Written by Jacob Shelton

Medicine and medical practices are constantly being updated. There’s always a better way to perform an operation that’s safer, and that gets the job done with less pain. However, many attempts at medical science from the 19th and early 20th centuries look pretty crazy when you compare them to the medical instruments and practices that we have today.

If you’ve always wanted to know what it was like to get a blood transfusion in the 1970s, or how electroshock therapy works, we’ve got some amazing photos and killer facts for you. You’ll definitely want to tell your friends about this one. Read on! 

In The 1950s You Could Buy Cigarettes In The Hospital, Somehow This Idea Didn't Stick

Source: Reddit

As absurd as it may seem in this day and age, someone recovering in the hospital in the 1950s was able to buy a pack of cigarettes and light up while they rested following an operation. Imagine, you just had open heart surgery and the first thing you do is light up your favorite brand of unfiltered cigarette. Was it healthy? No way. But at the time it was totally normal.

Dana Siegal, a former nurse told Stat News

It’s absolutely absurd to think there was a time when we actually smoked at the nurses station, sold cigarettes to patients, or bummed a smoke off of patients.

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Jacob Shelton


Jacob Shelton is a Los Angeles based writer. For some reason this was the most difficult thing he’s written all day, and here’s the kicker – his girlfriend wrote the funny part of that last sentence. As for the rest of the bio? That’s pure Jacob, baby. He’s obsessed with the ways in which singular, transgressive acts have shaped the broader strokes of history, and he believes in alternate dimensions, which means that he’s great at a dinner party. When he’s not writing about culture, pop or otherwise, he’s adding to his found photograph collection and eavesdropping on strangers in public.