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Health | by W. H. Corfield



Before we begin the study of the Laws of Health, it is absolutely essential to know something of the human body, which is to be kept healthy. Canon Kingsley, to whose suggestion the foundation of popular lectures of this kind is due, fully recognised this. He says, in his "Essay on Science and Health " (Health and Education, p. 13): - "Why should not the experiment be tried, far and wide, of giving lectures on health, as supplementary to those lectures on animal physiology, which are, I am happy to say, becoming more and more common? Why should not people be taught - they are already being aught at Birmingham - something about the tissues of he body, their structure and uses, the circulation of the blood, respiration, chemical changes in the air respired, amount breathed, digestion, nature of food, absorption, secretion, structure of the nervous system, - in fact, be aught something of how their own bodies are made, and how they work? Teaching of this kind ought to, and rill, in some more civilised age and country, be held a necessary element in the school course of every child.

TitleHealth
AuthorW. H. Corfield
PublisherD. Appleton And Company
Year1880
Copyright1880, D. Appleton And Company
AmazonHealth

By W. H. Corfield, M.A., M.D. (Oxon.), F.Rc.P.

Professor Of Hygiene And Public Health At University College, London; Medical Officer Of Health And Public Analyst For St. George's Hanover Square; Examiner In Sanitary Science At The University Of Cambridge.

The following Lectures were delivered at the Booms of the Society of Arts, under the auspices of the Trades' Guild of Learning and of the National Health Society. They have been corrected from the shorthand writer's notes, and are published in almost exactly the form in which they were given.

The Sanitary apparatus described can be studied at the Parkes Museum of Hygiene in University College, London.

-Lecture I. General Anatomy - The Bones And Muscles
Before we begin the study of the Laws of Health, it is absolutely essential to know something of the human body, which is to be kept healthy. Canon Kingsley, to whose suggestion the foundation of pop...
-General Anatomy - The Bones And Muscles. Continued
I have said already that the chest and abdomen are popular divisions of the trunk; but there is a very good reason for this - namely that in us, and in all animals of the class to which we belong, the...
-Bones And Their Uses
Bone, is in the first place, the hardest substance in the body (with the exception of the teeth), and contains three parts of mineral matter to only one part of organic or living substance. This compo...
-Bones And Their Uses. Continued
Between the bodies of the vertebr‘ (except the first two) there are placed tough gristly plates or discs which are attached closely and firmly to the bodies of the vertebr‘. They are soft in their...
-The Ribs And Breast-Bone
To the twelve vertebr‘ of the back there are attached on each side twelve pairs of thin curved bones called ribs. These bones are attached not one to each vertebra, but one between each two, i.e., e...
-Joints
Bones are joined together in several ways. In the first place, they are joined together by what we call fixed or immovable joints, such as have been explained in our description of the skull. Then the...
-Joints. Continued
There are a great many voluntary muscles over which we have no control, but that is our fault, and no fault of the muscles. We all have muscles, for instance, which, if we could use them, would make o...
-Lecture II. The Circulation Of The Blood
You all know there is a fluid in the body which we call blood, and that the object of this fluid is to nourish the tissues of the body; you can see, therefore, that it is necessary that this fluid sho...
-The Circulation Of The Blood. Part 2
This artery, the great aorta, gives off branches. The first branches that it gives off are two small branches a little above the semilunar valves, and these go into the substance of the heart. They ar...
-The Circulation Of The Blood. Part 3
So that where the large veins open into the auricle there are no valves, and the blood flows on through the auricle into the ventricle and gradually fills it; when it has got nearly full, the walls of...
-The Circulation Of The Blood. Part 4
There are other physical signs produced by the action of the heart besides this beating, and these are certain sounds that the heart produces when it is in action - two sounds, called the first and se...
-The Circulation Of The Blood. Part 5
The course that a particle of blood must take in the human body so as to pass through the greatest length of capillaries is to go through the great aorta and into the capillary vessels of one of those...
-The Circulation Of The Blood. Part 6
Now the lymphatics of the small intestines have, especially after the digestion of food, a fluid in them which is not like water; but, on the contrary, it is white like milk, and for the same reason t...
-Lecture III. Respiration
We will now consider the apparatus by means of which we breathe, the way in which that apparatus works, and the result of that working. The principal organs that are used in breathing go by the name ...
-Respiration. Part 2
I have mentioned that there are structures between the ribs; the ribs are connected partly by fibrous tissue, and more particularly there are muscles that pass between the ribs, from one rib to the ne...
-Respiration. Part 3
So you see the chief forces at work in inspiration are active muscular forces, by which the chest cavity is made larger, and the chief agents in expiration are passive agents, the pressure of the air ...
-Respiration. Part 4
Now, then, what happens to the blood as it goes through the lungs? The mixture of blood which comes into the right auricle of the heart is pumped by the right ventricle through the pulmonary artery in...
-Lecture IV. Nutrition
The food that we eat requires to be prepared in various ways before it can become part of the structures of which our body is composed. To this end, there is a complex apparatus contained in our bodie...
-Nutrition. Part 2
As the teeth of the two jaws are sufficiently alike, and those on each side of each jaw are alike, I will describe the teeth on one side of one jaw. Now, as to the first set of teeth. In front there ...
-Nutrition. Part 3
So we see that the presence of the food in the mouth, and the exercise of the tongue and cheeks, cause the salivary fluid to flow from the glands into the mouth; that fluid is mixed up with the food t...
-Nutrition. Part 4
The food does not fall down this tube into the stomach, for the simple reason that the gullet is not wide open like the windpipe; each part is only open when the food is going down, and it is opened b...
-Nutrition. Part 5
When the food gets into the stomach, its contact with the walls of the stomach causes the muscular fibres of the walls to contract, and the gastric juice to be formed, and it is not formed by the glan...
-Nutrition. Part 6
Several kinds of glands are situated in the walls of the intestines. There are glands which are collected together in patches, which go by the name of their discoverer, and are called Peyer's patches....
-Lecture V. The Liver And The Excretory Organs
The liver is the largest gland in the body. It is an organ situated on the right hand side of the abdomen, immediately underneath the diaphragm, to which it is attached by a strong fibrous ligament. I...
-The Liver And The Excretory Organs. Part 2
A great part of the bile is absorbed into the blood, so that as it is absorbed into the blood of the intestines, and comes back through the portal vein to the liver, it would seem as if certain parts ...
-The Liver And The Excretory Organs. Part 3
From the surface of the skin, just as from the lungs, besides the substances that are got rid of from the blood, heat is lost. I told you that a considerable quantity of heat is lost from the lungs, s...
-The Liver And The Excretory Organs. Part 4
The quantities I have mentioned are the average amounts excreted by the kidneys of an adult in twenty-four hours. One more thing we have to consider, and that is how this contrivance acts. The blood ...
-Lecture VI. The Nervous System
This is the system which regulates and controls the action of all the other organs of the body. In us, and in the higher animals generally - i.e., vertebrate animals - there are two nervous systems, o...
-The Nervous System. Part 2
If you take the section of the spinal cord you find that the posterior root of the spinal nerve starts from the posterior horn of the crescent of grey matter, and that the anterior root starts opposit...
-The Nervous System. Part 3
Let us speak a little about the properties of the spinal cord itself. If you cut through the spinal cord of an animal somewhere in the back, right across, then the animal has no longer any control wh...
-The Nervous System. Part 4
These nerves that I have been speaking about are made up of bundles of fibres, nerve fibres, and each of these nerve fibres can be shown to consist of a little tube with a little thin cord running dow...
-The Nervous System. Part 5
The first pair of these cranial nerves are called the olfactory nerves; they go to that part of the nose in which the organ of smell is situated; they are the nerves by which the stimuli which cause t...
-The Nervous System. Part 6
Which, then, is the part of the brain that has to do with consciousness? It is the grey matter on the surface of the brain. In it resides our will, and all our higher powers as animals. As we ascend i...
-Lecture VII. Organs Of The Senses
Let us now consider the organs by which the brain and spinal cord are put into communication with the outer world, which receive impressions from the outer world (impressions which are, if you like, c...
-Organs Of The Senses. Part 2
Let us pass on from the sense of touch to the two senses that are very nearly akin to it - the senses of taste and of smell. The sense of taste is, indeed, a very slight modification of the sense of t...
-Organs Of The Senses. Part 3
Inside the choroid coat we find a thin white film, which is continuous with the optic nerve. The optic nerve passes through the hard sclerotic coat on the outside, passes through the coat containing b...
-Organs Of The Senses. Part 4
I say that the place where the optic nerve enters the eyeball, where there are most nerve fibres, is blind, so we see that it is not nerve fibres that are affected by the stimulus of light; the layer ...
-Organs Of The Senses. Part 5
When, on the other hand, you go into a dark room where the light is not sufficient for you to see, a command is sent along the sympathetic nerve, which is the nerve which stimulates most of the involu...
-Organs Of The Senses. Part 6
The eyelids are lined by a mucous membrane which we call the conjunctiva, which secretes fluid which continually moistens the front part of the eye. That mucous membrane is not continued over the tran...
-Lecture VIII. The Health Of The Individual
The causes of disease have been studied from the very earliest times; the earliest writers on medicine wrote far more about the laws of health than they wrote about medicine. Hippocrates, the celebrat...
-The Health Of The Individual. Part 2
These are the three chief temperaments of the ancient writers, but another, called the bilious temperament, is often mentioned. This, however, we do not now consider a temperament, because it is not d...
-The Health Of The Individual. Part 3
One of the most marked examples of hereditary tendency to disease is found in consumption, the plague of our climate. This terrible disease kills more than half as many people as all the zymotic disea...
-The Health Of The Individual. Part 4
Shakspeare, in his As You like It (act ii. scene 7), makes Jacques say, - All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players: They have their exits, and their entrances; And one man...
-The Health Of The Individual. Part 5
Now, the diseases that are caused to infants by giving them improper food instead of milk, starchy foods, meat, broths, and soups, which they are not a bit capable of digesting, are very many. In the ...
-Lecture IX. The Health Of The Individual - Continued
Scarlet Fever is one of the diseases that are very prevalent among young children - a disease, like the rest of these infectious diseases, which spreads very readily in places where there is no throug...
-The Health Of The Individual - Continued. Part 2
Diffusion of practical knowledge is the great preventive remedy of rickets. Law can aid in the spread of that knowledge; and society, if it did its duty, would remove the subsidiary causes of want of...
-The Health Of The Individual - Continued. Part 3
Consumption is also prevalent, and more especially so where children live in overcrowded rooms. During childhood the second set of teeth come out, and we have the same diseases due to dentition as wh...
-The Health Of The Individual - Continued. Part 4
Another habit that is sometimes formed during this period of youth is the habit of drinking alcoholic liquors. Now, whatever we may think, whether we agree with those who say that alcoholic liquors ar...
-The Health Of The Individual - Continued. Part 5
At or before middle age the results of habits begin to show themselves, and the result of one habit, that of drinking alcoholic liquors, begins to show itself sometimes in a very marked manner. It is ...
-The Health Of The Individual - Continued. Part 6
I may here mention that during the earlier periods of life washing with cold water is an exceedingly important thing, and it should be performed early in the morning, not merely from the point of view...
-Lecture X. The Air
The air we breathe, about which I am going to speak to-night, is a material substance. We feel it when it blows upon our faces, and we find it exercises pressure upon objects on the. surface of the ea...
-The Air. Part 2
The substances that are around us are commonly divided into three kinds - solids, liquids, and gases. A solid body has a certain amount of rigidity, retains its shape and size, unless it be broken or...
-The Air. Part 3
Now, just as a lighted candle lives in oxygen gas, and lives in air because there is oxygen gas in the air, which combines with the carbon in the candle when it is lighted, so our life goes on in prec...
-Lecture XI. The Air - Continued
Air contains a small quantity of a substance we call ammonia; a very small quantity only, amounting to about 4 parts in 10,000,000 parts of air. It contains also, under ordinary circumstances, a very...
-The Air - Continued. Part 2
Carbonic acid gas is in itself poisonous. It is not like nitrogen, a mere harmless substance, which poisons you when you go into it because there is no free oxygen, but an animal will die in an atmosp...
-The Air - Continued. Part 3
With regard to oils used for lighting, the chief thing that has to bo considered is the contrivance in which they are burned, so as to produce the greatest amount of light with the most perfect combus...
-The Air - Continued. Part 4
I may give you an idea of the amount of damage done to the air of rooms by candles, even where perfect combustion takes place, by telling you that two sperm candles produce as much carbonic acid, and ...
-The Air - Continued. Part 5
The workers in zinc and copper, especially in places where these metals are smelted, are subject to special forms of poisoning; but much of the lead poisoning or painters' colic, which is a disease ca...
-The Air - Continued. Part 6
In this climate we cannot bear the air of a room to be changed more than, three or four times in an hour. If changed more frequently there is a draught, and we can therefore see that since we must hav...
-The Air - Continued. Part 7
I have to mention next a very simple means by which air can be introduced into a room by means of the window, so as to go upwards, even in the coldest weather without anybody experiencing a draught. A...
-The Air - Continued. Part 8
The next is known as M'Kinnell's ventilator. In this there are two tubes, one inside the other. They are let into the ceiling of a room, and made to end outside, at different heights; the heated air e...
-Lecture XIII. Foods And Drinks
We are continually, as you know, getting rid of certain substances from our bodies. We get rid, in the first place, by means of all our excretory organs, of a considerable quantity of water; we get ri...
-Foods And Drinks. Part 2
Organic foods that contain nitrogen are called nitrogenous foods; they contain carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, and very often sulphur or phosphorus. Now these nitrogenous food substances are also ...
-Foods And Drinks. Part 3
These substances go especially to form tissue, and so the nitrogenous substances have been called tissue-forming foods. But they do not solely contribute to that purpose, some part being oxidised in t...
-Foods And Drinks. Part 4
We will now pass to the consideration of the foods we do actually eat and drink. In the first place, almost all these foods are mixtures of several of the substances I have been describing as essenti...
-Lecture XIV. Foods And Drinks - Continued
We will next consider the flesh of animals. We may divide animal meats somewhat roughly into what are called red and white. Bed meats contain the greatest amount of nutriment in a highly concentrated ...
-Foods And Drinks - Continued. Part 2
Beef is generally accepted as the most nutritious of butchers' meats, and certainly it has the greatest proportion of nutritious substances; it is, however, rather less digestible than mutton, and the...
-Foods And Drinks - Continued. Part 3
Meat may also be preserved by being kept in solutions of substances like salt. The great disadvantage of that is that the brine dissolves out a large proportion of the nutritious substance of the meat...
-Foods And Drinks - Continued. Part 4
New bread is much less digestible than that which has been kept a short time, because, when new, it forms a sticky mass in the mouth, with which the saliva is not readily mixed, and so the action of t...
-Foods And Drinks - Continued. Part 5
The use of strong wines and beers has a tendency to produce the disease called gout, and more especially so when taken in conjunction with highly nitrogenous foods. With regard to light wines and bee...
-Lecture XV. Drinking Water
Water is one of the most important of our foods, it is a necessity of life to us. Our bodies contain about two-thirds of their weight of water, and the blood contains 79 per cent of it. Water is conti...
-Drinking Water. Part 2
But another point of view, and an important one, which makes the consideration of the hardness of the water of some moment, is that you cannot make good tea with hard water. You can make very much bet...
-Drinking Water. Part 3
It has been shown in other places, in Berlin, for instance, that the death-rate in houses supplied with impure water is very much higher than in houses supplied with pure water. So cholera is spread ...
-Drinking Water. Part 4
How is water to be supplied to places? The best plan of supplying it is, as the ancient Romans did, to go to a considerable distance from a place and find water which has not been contaminated, and br...
-Drinking Water. Part 5
Filtration must be downwards and intermittent; it must not go on continuously. That is practically the plan which is carried out by the water companies. They allow the water to stand in tanks in the ...
-Lecture XVI. Climate
Under the head of Climate let us first consider moisture in the atmosphere. The air dissolves water just in the same way as water dissolves sugar or salt The air dissolves very different quantities of...
-Climate. Part 2
At 64 Fahr. air will hold in solution 6 1/2 grains of moisture per cubic foot, and if it has that quantity it is saturated. Now, if on any given day it is found that the temperature is 64, ...
-Climate. Part 3
The blood, then, is chiefly in the internal organs, so there is an increased action of the internal organs (except the liver) in cold weather, an increased power of digesting food, and an increased ne...
-Climate. Part 4
Rivers also often influence the climate by inundating the country, and by the large amount of material that they bring down, which they deposit at various parts of their course or at their mouths, so ...
-Climate. Part 5
In many instances the marshy country itself may be made salubrious, and this has been done on a large scale all over the world; Lower Egypt is one of the most remarkable instances of this. Lower Egypt...
-Lecture XVII. Houses And Towns
We will now consider the sanitary arrangements in houses, and to a certain extent in towns also. I will first say a few words about water cisterns. With the system of constant service there is no ne...
-Houses And Towns. Part 2
Now, a most important question is, Where does the waste-pipe go to? In almost all old houses in London the waste-pipe, even if the cistern be at the top of the house, goes straight down through the ho...
-Houses And Towns. Part 3
We, as you know, are continually separating out from our blood impurities, and we ought to as regularly get rid of all refuse matters from the neighbourhood of our dwellings. If not got rid of they p...
-Houses And Towns. Part 4
The pipe that conveys foul water away from the house must end in the common sewer of the district, and where it joins the street sewer a very common plan, and not at all a bad plan, is to put a heavy ...
-Houses And Towns. Part 5
I warn you against having openings of any kind into the drains from the basement It is a very common thing to have a trap under the tap for the kitchen boiler, leading into the drain; these are most d...
-Lecture XVIII. Smallpox
I am going to speak to you this evening about one disease. If you ask why I single out this disease from all the rest, I do so because it is, as is acknowledged by all who know anything about the subj...
-Smallpox. Part 2
It is rarely that people have smallpox more than once; but yet there are not a few cases on record where the same person has had it twice, and a certain number three times, and even more, so that it i...
-Smallpox. Part 3
He tried vaccination from a person who had caught cow-pox from the cow - from the cow directly, and afterwards from the person who had been inoculated from the cow, and found all equally successful. ...
-Smallpox. Part 4
It has been quite clearly shown that people can be vaccinated well and badly; that good or bad vaccination depends upon the number and kind of marks produced. Mr. Simon showed this some years ago by c...
-Skipton - Vaccination Inquiry
In consequence of assertions made by the anti-vaccination agitators of this part of Yorkshire, the Skipton Board of Guardians, about two months ago, appointed a committee, composed partly of guardians...
-Lecture XIX. Communicable Diseases
Among diseases that are very largely spread in communities, there is one great class of diseases which do not travel from the places in which they are found; they prevail very largely among the people...
-Communicable Diseases. Part 2
It has long been observed that the phenomena of these diseases resemble in various ways the phenomena which occur during decomposition or putrefaction of organic substances; and it has been shown by s...
-Communicable Diseases. Part 3
We see from this that it is of the highest importance that the rooms in which persons are suffering from these diseases should be well ventilated. Water is an important medium for the communication o...
-Communicable Diseases. Part 4
What I want you to understand is that the difference between the communication of the poisons of these two classes of diseases is not in the poison, or in the nature of the poison, hut in the way in w...
-Communicable Diseases. Part 5
We are told also that this disease is not generally communicable from one person to another, because it is frequently taken to a place, and does not spread there; the answer to that is perfectly clear...
-Communicable Diseases. Part 6
All discharges from the patient should be received in vessels containing a disinfectant, as carbolic acid, or better still, a strong solution of green copperas. The cup which is provided for the patie...









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