Tuesday, January 11, 2005

The pharmacovigilance timeline

Here's an interesting page on pharmacovigilance that starts at 1780 B.C. and continues to the 1970's. (Tip o' the hat to Anthony Cox.) It's still a work in progress, but it's fascinating reading. For those of us complaining about the current malpractice crisis, we might want to remember this excerpt from the Code of Hammurabi: "If a physician make a large incision with the operating knife, and kill him, or open a tumor with the operating knife, and cut out the eye, his hands shall be cut off." Or this one, from the 10th century: "Whosoever shall have or sell any poison or noxious drug not useful or necessary to his art, let him be hanged." Yikes.

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