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12 Vintage Medical Photos That Make You Super Grateful For Modern Medicine

"They don't have a cure for the common cold? We're living in the dark ages!" --a real quote by me on multiple occasions.

But after careful consideration (and a look at a few of these photos), I am extremely happy with the progress we have made. We certainly are not in the dark ages. And we should all be thankful.

Check out some of these crazy vintage medical tools and practices from ages ago. It's incredible to see how far we've advanced!

1. Glass Leech Jar (1800s)

The jar from northern Italy would hold leeches that would suck all the infected or bad blood from patients.

2.  Cocaine Toothache Drops (1885)

Read this ad:


Instantaneous Cure!

Price 15 Cents.

For sale by all Druggists.

(Registered March 1885.)

Cocaine is the new anaesthetic now used so extensively throughout Europe and thiscountry by Physicians, Surgeons and Dentists.

This preparation of Toothache Drops contains Cocaine, and its wonderful properties are fully demonstrated by the many recommendations it is daily receiving.

Take no other except Cocaine Toothache Drops.For sale by all Druggists.

Prepared by the Lloyd Manufacturing Co., 219 Hudson Ave., Albany, N.Y.

3. Heroin (1890s)

Bayer commercialized both heroin and aspirin in the 1890s, and only one of those will get you send to prison/rehab now! It was used to cure both pain and coughs. People realized it was probably a bad idea, so Bayer had to find a new market who didn't really know about the dangers of heroin. So obviously they went with:

4. Heroin For Kids! (1912)

The large part of the ad roughly translates to "For strong coughs, Bayer Heroin Cough Syrup". Also for getting kids addicted to hard narcotics at a young age.

5. Multi-Person Ventilator (1950s)

Because Polio was the worst, there needed to be machines to help patients breathe. This multi-person ventilator helped people breath a little easier until the first vaccine came along.

6. Prosthetic Limbs (1895, Victorian Era)

I just can't imagine seeing someone wearing a robotic hand like this and it being practical?

7. Radioactive Water (1928)

This sounds like a movie waiting to happen. One guy drank three bottles of this a DAY to improve his "vitality". His teeth literally started falling out of his skull. He ended up dying a couple years later (shocker) and his death report showed his whole upper jaw except for his two front teeth had been removed. All the remaining bone tissue was disintegrating and there were literally holes forming in his skull.

8. Adjustable Birthing Chair (1750-1850)

Just a great big NO THANKS on this one. Granted, there should be foot rests on the bottom there...but no matter where your feet are, this seems like an unpleasant experience.

9. Radio-Vitant

This was a type of physiotherapy for the mentally ill. It used light therapy to naturally relieve pain and suffering. Looks a little like roasting turkeys, though.

10. Defibrillator Prototype (1940s)

Although the defibrillator did end up being an incredible life-saving device, this one kinda looks like a radio. With two spoons attached to it. And no real indication that it is a medical instrument.

11. Dr. Clark's Spinal Apparatus

This just seems like a hassle, honestly. It was used for things like scoliosis, as doctors didn't really have any other way to treat it.

12. Tanning Beds For Babies (1925)

These were used for treating rickets during the winter months and also for keeping that golden glow.

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