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OXFORD REVISE: AQA GCSE HISTORY: HEALTH AND THE PEOPLE: c1000 TO THE PRESENT DAY: GLOSSARY

The key vocabulary you need to learn for your AQA GCSE History: Health and the people: c1000 to the present day paper. Find all the terms and definitions you need to understand, from ‘ABSOLUTE POVERTY’ to ‘X-RAY’.
A (ABSOLUTE POVERTY to ASTROLOGY)
absolute poverty
Absolute poverty is when people are unable to meet the basic needs of life.

acupuncture
Acupuncture involves inserting fine needles into specific parts of the body; the needles stimulate the body to produce pain-relieving chemicals and allow energy to flow freely.

amputation
Amputation is when a painful or damaged part of the body is cut off.

anaesthetic
An anaesthetic is a substance that removes pain or causes unconsciousness.

anatomy
Anatomy is the science of understanding the structure and internal organs of the body.

antibiotic
An antibiotic is a substance that kills or restricts the growth of microorganisms.

antiseptic
Antiseptic is a chemical applied to a wound to prevent the growth of disease-causing microbes; also applied to surgical instruments.

apothecary
In the Middle Ages, an apothecary was a person who sold herbs and spices; apothecaries transitioned to selling medicines and drugs after the sixteenth century.

aromatherapy
Aromatherapy involves inhaling essential oils to stimulate the brain or massaging them into the skin; often used to try to relieve stress or pain.

aseptic
Aseptic is the state of being completely free of harmful microbes; sterilising to create a contamination-free environment.

astrology
Astrology is the study of the stars and planets.

B (BACTERIA to BUBONIC PLAGUE)
bacteria
Bacteria is a microorganism that lives in water, soil, plants, and animals, and that can cause disease.

barber-surgeon
A barber-surgeon is a barber who, as well as cutting hair, also practiced surgery and dentistry.

blood transfusion
A blood transfusion is the process of taking blood from one individual and placing it into another.

bloodletting
Bloodletting is the medieval medical treatment of removing some blood from a patient by opening a vein or using leeches to suck blood out of the body.

Boer War
The Boer War is the name given to the war between Britain and the Boers in South Africa, 1899–1902.

Booth
Booth was an English social reformer, born in 1840, who reported on people living in poverty in London.

bubonic plague
The bubonic plague is a plague spread by the bite of an infected flea; causes buboes, which are pus-filled swellings.

C (CAUTERISATION to COUNCIL HOUSING)
cauterisation
Cauterisation is the process of burning a wound to stop it bleeding, usually by heating a piece of iron and pressing it onto the wound.

cesspit
A cesspit is a hole for the disposal of liquid waste and sewage.

cholera
Cholera is an infectious and often fatal bacterial disease, usually contracted from infected water supplies, which causes severe vomiting and diarrhoea.

contagious
Contagious is when something, often a disease, can spread from one person to another.

council housing
Council housing is houses built and owned by a local council, which are rented out to people at a low rent.

D - F (DISPENSARY to FLEMING)
dispensary
A dispensary was part of a hospital that gave out medicine for free to the people experiencing poverty.

dissection
Dissection is the action of methodically cutting up a body or plant in order to study its internal parts.

DNA
DNA is the abbreviation for deoxyribonucleic acid, which is molecules that genes are made from.

Ehrlich
Ehrlich was a German scientist, born in 1854, who discovered the first chemical cure or ‘magic bullet’ (Salvarsan 606).

epidemic
An epidemic is when a disease spreads to a large number of people.

flagellation
Flagellation is the action of whipping oneself.

Fleming
Fleming was a Scottish scientist, born in 1881, who discovered penicillin.

G (GALEN to GREAT PLAGUE)
Galen
Galen was a Greek doctor from Roman times, born in 129CE, who developed the theory of opposites.

Germ Theory
Germ Theory is the idea that microbes are present in the air and cause decay.

gong farmer
A gong farmer was a person who cleaned out privies and cesspits in medieval times.

Great Plague
The Great Plague was the name given to an outbreak of plague in London in 1665.

H (HARVEY to HYPNOTHERAPY)
Harvey
Harvey was an English doctor, born in 1578, who first published an accurate theory of the circulation of the blood.

Hippocrates
Hippocrates was an Ancient Greek doctor, born around 460BCE, who developed the theory of the four humours.

homeopathy
Homeopathy involves taking a medicine that causes symptoms similar to those of a person’s illness; tiny doses are believed to cure the person by stimulating their own natural defence.

Hunter
Hunter was a Scottish surgeon, born in 1728, who promoted the scientific method.

hypnotherapy
Hypnotherapy involves being hypnotised to completely relax the patient; uses positive thinking to relieve stress, allergies, and addictions.

I - K (IMMUNITY to KOCH)
immunity
Immunity is the resistance to a disease.

immunosuppressant drugs
Immunosuppressant drugs are medicines that calm the body’s immune system and prevent it from attacking healthy cells or tissues.

inoculation
Inoculation is the act of using weakened but live germs of a disease to build up immunity (resistance) against the stronger form of the same disease in a healthy person.

keyhole surgery
Keyhole surgery is the modern surgical technique in which operations are performed inside the body using cameras and instruments that are inserted through small cuts in the skin.

Koch
Koch was a German surgeon, born in 1843, who linked Germ Theory and disease; founder of the study of bacteria.

L (LASSEZ-LAIRE to LISTER)
laissez-faire
Laissez-faire is the French phrase meaning ‘leave alone’; in the nineteenth century, many people felt that this was what the government should do: not interfere, not force people to change, and allow things to take their own course.

laser surgery
Laser surgery is a medical procedure using lasers (a type of powerful light beam), rather than a scalpel.

lavatorium
A lavatorium is a communal washing area for monks.

ligature
A ligature is a string or thread.

Lister
Lister was a Scottish surgeon, born in 1827, who first introduced antiseptic surgery.

M - N (MAGIC BULLET to NHS)
magic bullet
A magic bullet is a chemical cure that kills the harmful germ specifically, without harming the rest of the body.

miasma
Miasma is the name given to the ‘infectious mist’ people thought was given off by rotting animals, rubbish, and human waste; many believed it caused illness and disease.

microbes
Microbes are living organisms that are too tiny to be seen without a microscope; includes bacteria, which can cause disease.

microbiology
Microbiology is the study of microorganisms, such as bacteria.

Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is another name for the medieval period, it lasted until the fourteenth century and the start of the Renaissance period.

natural
Natural means appearing in nature, such as from plants and animals.

NHS
The NHS is the abbreviation for National Health Service, which is a publicly funded system set up in 1948 to provide health care for everyone in Britain.

P (PANDEMIC to PURGING)
pandemic
A pandemic is a disease that has spread across a large region, for example multiple continents or worldwide.

Paré
Paré was a French surgeon, born in 1510, who improved the treatment of wounded soldiers.

Pasteur
Pasteur was a French scientist, born in 1822, who published Germ Theory.

pasteurisation
Pasteurisation is the process of killing bacteria in liquid food, such as milk or wine, by heating it.

penicillin
Penicillin is the world’s first antibiotic (a substance that kills or restricts the growth of microorganisms).

Petri dish
A Petri dish is a shallow, clear dish used in scientific experiments.

physician
A physician is a university-trained doctor specialised in diagnosing patients and prescribing medicines or treatments.

pilgrimage
A pilgrimage is a journey, of devotion or of moral significance, to visit a holy place.

placebo
A placebo is an inactive substance used as a control in experiments.

plastic surgery
Plastic surgery is a medical procedure designed to repair or alter the physical appearance of a patient.

pneumonic plague
The pneumonic plague was a disease spread by breathing in germs from the infected lungs of a bubonic plague victim.

pomander
A pomander is a ball of scented herbs.

privy
A privy is a toilet located in a small shed outside a house or building.

public health
Public health is the term used to describe the health of the population as a whole.

purging
Purging is consuming a herbal mixture that causes vomiting or emptying your bowels.

Q - R (QUACK to ROWNTREE)
quack
A quack is a showy salesman who pretended to have medical knowledge; usually travelled from town to town, claiming to sell miracle cures.

quarantine
Quarantine is confining or stopping people from going in or out of a place.

radiation therapy
Radiation therapy is a treatment that uses high-energy radiation to shrink tumours and kill cancer cells.

Rowntree
Rowntree was an English social reformer, born in 1871, who reported on people living in poverty in York.

S (SANITATION to SUPERNATURAL)
sanitation
Sanitation is the process of keeping a place clean, such as providing clean water or removing sewage.

shrapnel
Shrapnel are fragments of a bomb, shell or bullet that has exploded.

Simpson
Simpson was a Scottish doctor, born in 1811, who discovered chloroform as an anaesthetic.

skin graft
A skin graft is the surgical operation of taking skin from one part of the body to cover a wound on another part of the body.

slum housing
Slum housing is cramped, poorly built houses.

social distancing
Social distancing is the practice of avoiding direct contact with people to stop the spread of disease.

social services
Social services are a range of public services designed to support those in need or disadvantaged.

spontaneous generation
The spontaneous generation is the theory that microbes are created by decaying matter, and that germs are the result of disease.

superbug
A superbug is an antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

supernatural
The supernatural relates to religion, magic, or something unexplained by science, such as religious prayers, charms, and astrology.

T (THEORY OF OPPOSITES to TREPANNING)
theory of opposites
The theory of opposites is an Ancient Roman theory that illness can be cured by balancing the humours using opposites, such as cold treatments to cool hot blood; associated with Galen.

theory of the four humours
The theory of the four humours is an Ancient Greek theory of illness, which involves the equal balance of four ‘humours’ (fluids) within the body; associated with Hippocrates.

transplant
A transplant is an operation in which a damaged human organ is replaced with a healthy one.

trepanning
Trepanning is a procedure which involves drilling a hole in a person’s skull.

V - X (VACCINATION to X-RAY)
vaccination
Vaccination is the treatment of using the dead germs of a disease, or one similar to it, to build up an immunity (resistance) against the stronger form of the disease.

Vesalius
Vesalius was a Flemish professor of anatomy, born in 1514, who challenged Galen’s views.

Welfare State
The Welfare State is a system by which the government looks after the well-being of the nation, particularly those who cannot help themselves, such as those who are sick or unemployed.

X-ray
An X-ray is a narrow beam of electromagnetic radiation used to create images inside the body.

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