Friday, July 30, 2021

Cancer Comparisons from Medieval to Present

 Medieval bones yield 1000-year-old leprosy genome | New Scientist

Since the dawn of technology and advances in science, it can be commonly believed that the cause of cancer comes from almost anything modern, like cigarettes, modified nutrition, machinery, and radiation, etc. The University of Cambridge has trumped that belief by using X-Rays and CT scans on medieval bones to search for osteosarcomas, which in deed do exist. "The investigators found rates of cancer about 10 times higher than had been previously discovered through examining only the bones' exteriors for lesions." The researchers found signs of cancer mostly in the pelvis. They projected a higher estimate of 9% to 14% because CT scans detect bone metastases about 75% of the time, and only one-third to one-half of cancer deaths involve spread to the bone.

Jenna Dittmar, an archeologist at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland had mentioned, "Until now it was thought that the most significant causes of ill health in medieval people were infectious diseases such as dysentery and bubonic plague, along with malnutrition and injuries due to accidents or warfare." In reality, in modern Britain, about 40% to 50% of people have cancer by the time they die, and it has been that way since back in 3000 BC.

Cancer is not new, and has its own ways of starting regardless of human artificial factors.


1 comment:

  1. The results of this study are fascinating. It’s good to know that cancer was around for thousands of years, as a better understanding of the disease will hopefully lead to better treatments. I wonder how people attempted to treat cancer thousands of years ago and how it impacted ancient societies.