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      Use of Natural Substances in the Treatment of Renal Stones and Other Urinary Disorders in the Medieval Levant

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          Abstract

          Urinary disorders were common in the ancient world, especially in the Mediterranean region. In semi-arid zones and countries with unreliable water sources, renal stones and other urinary problems occur with greater frequency. A lack of water and correspondingly high levels of calcium saturation are among the main reasons for the formation of calcium sediments in the urinary tract, and it is hardly surprising, therefore, that many generations of physicians and healers have been called upon to treat these disorders, or at least alleviate the pain associated with them. Down the ages, many natural substances have been used for this purpose. This article focuses on 62 plants, 9 animal-based remedies, 1 mineral preparation and 4 medicinal substances of different or uncertain origin, traced in a recent survey of relevant historical literature (both medical and non-medical). Many of these materials, used to treat urinary disorders in the Levant between the 8th and the 18th centuries, had already been in use since the classical period, and several are still used today in traditional medicine.

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          Treatment of Renal Stones in Bulgaria in Ancient Times (‘Hissarya’ Baths)

          Well-known mineral baths in Bulgaria, ‘Hissarya’, are described. Their existence dates back more than 25 centuries. ‘Hissarya’ is an Arabic word meaning ‘siege of a castle’. Remains of castle walls are the symbol of ‘Hissarya’ today. Every year more than 100,000 patients from Bulgaria and other countries visit ‘Hissarya’. From the time of the Thracians and the Roman Empire until now renal stones have been successfully treated by drinking the mineral water and by taking baths. The Roman Emperor Septimius Severus (193–211) visited ‘Hissarya’ every spring to treat his renal disease.
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            Author and article information

            Journal
            AJN
            Am J Nephrol
            10.1159/issn.0250-8095
            American Journal of Nephrology
            S. Karger AG
            978-3-8055-7424-2
            978-3-318-00852-4
            0250-8095
            1421-9670
            2002
            July 2002
            27 June 2002
            : 22
            : 2-3
            : 172-179
            Affiliations
            aDepartment of Eretz Israel Studies, University of Haifa, and bSchool of Medicine, Tel-Aviv University, Tel-Aviv, Israel
            Article
            63757 Am J Nephrol 2002;22:172–179
            10.1159/000063757
            12097736
            © 2002 S. Karger AG, Basel

            Copyright: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be translated into other languages, reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, microcopying, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in government regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug. Disclaimer: The statements, opinions and data contained in this publication are solely those of the individual authors and contributors and not of the publishers and the editor(s). The appearance of advertisements or/and product references in the publication is not a warranty, endorsement, or approval of the products or services advertised or of their effectiveness, quality or safety. The publisher and the editor(s) disclaim responsibility for any injury to persons or property resulting from any ideas, methods, instructions or products referred to in the content or advertisements.

            Page count
            Tables: 3, References: 28, Pages: 8
            Product
            Self URI (application/pdf): https://www.karger.com/Article/Pdf/63757
            Categories
            Origins of Nephrology –Middle Ages, Renaissance, Byzantium

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