A potted history of professional footcare (podiatry)


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A historic outline of the professional care of feet

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A potted history of professional footcare (podiatry)

  1. 1. Cameron Kippen toeslayer2000@yahoo.com.au
  2. 2. Pre-History There is no evidence early hominids had corns and even if they did refined tools to shave the skin have never been found. Normal skin physiology would necessitate self-pedicure and nail care.
  3. 3. The Egyptians Bas-relief carvings at the entrance to Ankmahor's tomb (circa 2400 BCE). Alexander the Great (356 – 323 BCE) Medical attention to feet is thought to have spanned the whole of ancient Egyptian civilization. Wars until the 4th c BCE were fought barefoot so foot lesions would be common
  4. 4. Corn Care in Ancient Egypt  Corns were known in Ancient Egypt (circa 4000 BCE)  In the New Kingdom (1567-1320 BCE) bronze razors replaced the crude copper alloy. The coming of the Iron Age (1000 BCE) probably meant skin scraping utensils were made from iron.
  5. 5. The Ancient Greeks Hippocrates recognized the treatment for corns required physical reduction of hard skin followed by removal of the cause. He is thought to have refined skin scrapers for this purpose. Physical removal combined with skin cell rehydration dates from this period and has not fundamentally changed through the centuries.Hippocrates (c. 460- c.377BCE)
  6. 6. The Romans Celsus was a Greek physician living in Rome in the first century BCE . He wrote De Medicina an extensive medical encyclopedia drawn from the wisdom of Ancient Greece. Celsus referred to corns as clavus (i.e. carpenter’s nail). Later the medical term became "clavus pedum". Roman scientist and philosopher, Aulus Cornelius Celsus (c 25—c. 50 BCE)
  7. 7. Foot Washing Footwashing was a Common Middle Eastern Custom extended to house guests. At the Last Supper Christ dramatically subverted the common custom by washing His disciple's feet as an act of humility and Brotherhood.
  8. 8. The first known definition of a corn Paul of Aegina (AD 615 -690) defined a corn as: A white circular body like the head of a nail, forming in all parts of the body, but more especially on the soles of the feet and the toes. It may be removed in the course of some time by pairing away the prominent part of it constantly with a scalpel or rubbing it down with pumice. The same thing can be done with a callus. The use of pumice stone to rub away hard skin was popular among Roman Legions.
  9. 9. The Dark Ages (5th-15th Century) In 1163 a Papal Decree forbid clergy from committing the sacrilege of shedding blood. Bloodletting monks turned their duties over to barber surgeons and corn cutters.
  10. 10. Medieval Practitioners Magic obsessed healers reveled in different means of skin hydration. Corns were treated with bazaar combinations ranging from pastes made from swine dung or the ash of the willow bark to soaks of the gastric juice of a calf's stomach.
  11. 11. Shoes for purpose The Poulaine In the 11th century French nobleman Fulk Rechin of Anjou had long toed shoes crafted to accommodate his painful bunions The Bears Paw or Duck Bill Broad toes shoes were introduced In the late 15th century to accommodate syphilitic sores.
  12. 12. The Quack’s Act The overwhelming presence of sores from plague and syphilis became too great a challenge for traditional medicine and in England it was decreed anyone could treat superficial sores by any means. The Quack’s Act gave licence to sell and administer herbs, roots, waters, and almost anything to apply to outward sores or wounds. The term quack derives from the archaic word "quacksalver, literally meaning "hawker of salve.” Henry VIII (1457 -1509) He suffered painful sores on his feet and wore Duckbill shoes.
  13. 13. Corn Salves The word “quack” came to mean "shout,“ and quacksalvers advetised their services on the street shouting in a loud voice. Corn salves were popular among corn cutters and the mountbacks obliged their customers by treating them in the street. “Wives, shall I mend your husband's horns? I'll grind your knives to please your wives, and very nicely cut your corns.” Hindley C. (1884 ) A History of the Cries of London
  14. 14. Shakespeare " Welcome , gentlemen ! Ladies that have their toes unplagued with corns, will have a bout with you. Ah ah my mistresses! which of you all Will now deny to dance? She that makes dainty, she I'll swear hath corns! Am I come near you now?" Romeo & Juliet Act 1 Sc5 William Shakespeare (1564-1616)
  15. 15. Town Cries and corn cutters Prior to the Great Fire of London, it was common place to advertise personal services such as corn removal through the medium of street cries. Corn cures became a popular product advertised by town criers. Great Fire of London (1666)
  16. 16. An undignified occupation “Corn cutters learn to cut corns by corn cutting fools” Corns were not considered a medical ailment by the medical fraternity and physicians regarded their treatment as undignified. By the seventeenth century corn cutting had become an acknowledged means of living albeit it was not considered a respectable profession. "The Charlatan " by Jan Victors (1619-1679)
  17. 17. By Royal Appointment Towards the end of the seventeenth century, corn cutting Became more respectable with the numbers of practitioners increasing in England due to an influx of Dutchmen after the accession of King William of Orange, to the British throne. Royal recognition brought respectability. John Hardman became the celebrated corn cutter to William of Orange.
  18. 18. Celebrated Corn Cutters Many corn cutters frequented the popular coffee and bathhouses, advertising their skills with grandiose claims of cure and infallible remedies. Most professed to be the world's greatest authority on feet and foot related problems and their eccentric behaviour soon brought them to the attention of high society. Thomas Shadwell (1642-1692) became a celebrated playwright
  19. 19. The beginning of medicalisation In France towards the end of the 18th century medical specialisation became established and the first book on corn cutting appeared in 1781, entitled 'Art de Soigner les Pieds,’ by a Frenchman, Nicholas Laurent Lafrost. Following the French Revolution (1789) the birth of modern medicine began with ‘La Gaze’.
  20. 20. The Corn Cutter In 1774 corn operating was not a recognised trade. There were no chiropodists recorded in Campbell's, The London Tradesman The absence of a formal apprenticeship meant many practitioners encouraged their offspring to take up the calling and trained them in house. "I am sure if woman judg'd aright No quack should view this lovly sight ...“ Bob Funney (1735-1765)
  21. 21. Chiropody English corn cutter, David Low(e) published his text on care of the feet by plagiarising ‘L'Art de Soigner les Pieds’, and retitled the works ‘Chiropodologia.’ (1781) Common usage determined the title ‘Chiropody,’ which eventually overtook the terms corn cutter and corn operator . The 'Ch' is written as an ‘x‘ in Greek and Pronounced with a silent ‘h’. The ‘X’ when translated to English becomes a harsh sounding ‘K,’ pronounced, 'ki’ropodist'. The corn cutter of the early part of the 17th century was poor and earned little from his trade. This may explain why many provided Other services such tooth pulling. By the eighteenth century the trade of corn cutting or corn operators as they preferred, had become very respectable. Charging approximately a guinea for their services practitioners became quite prosperous.
  22. 22. Clinical Professionalism By the end of the eighteenth century, street corn cutters began to disappear and with them went the fashion for outlandish claims and expertise. Instead the more discerning corn operator s preferred simple business cards with the address of their practice. Clients could expect to find premises well appointed reflecting the Standard of the occupier.
  23. 23. Corn Operator – Friend or Foe? Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington (1769 –1852) Napoleone Buonaparte (1769 – 1821) The Duke of Wellington despised corn operators and believed anyone with corns deserved them. Emperor Napoleon’ s closest friend and confident was his corn cutter .
  24. 24. Disreputable Craft Heyman Lion dedicated his life to find the cause of corns. In 1791 he registered as a medical student at the Medical Faculty of Edinburgh University. On completion of the course five years later he presented himself for a degree of doctor of medicine. The Faculty refused because, in their opinion, he represented a disreputable craft (corn cutting), and was unworthy of being a member of an honourable society (medicine). Surgeons Hall Edinburgh
  25. 25. Lincoln’s Chiropodist Dr Isachar Zacharie (1827-1900) treat distinguished public figures gratis, and then utilize their glowing testimonials to attract clients willing to pay handsomely for his services. “Dr. Zacharie has operated on my feet with great success, and considerable addition to my comfort.” President Lincoln
  26. 26. Charles Dickens The author of David Copperfield immortalized his personal corn cutter Mrs Jane Seymour Hill (a small person). She was a well- respected corn cutter in London and described as one of the greatest London characters. Miss Mowcher is a dwarf hairdresser who plays a pivotal role in David Copperfiled
  27. 27. Professionalisation According to Kelly's London Directory in 1800 there was only one chiropodist registered in London. By 1840 there were three; and in 1880 there were forty. The earliest references to corn cutter and corn cutting in the Oxford Dictionary (1893) indicate by this time these were abusive terms. Early chiropodists worked independently of others. In London the first association of practitioners was formed in 1854 by Durlacher who recognised the need for a protected profession. Similar activities took place elsewhere and in the colonies.
  28. 28. Professional Associations The first society of chiropodists was established in New York in 1895 with the first school opening in 1911. In 1912 the British established a society at the London Foot Hospital and a school was added in 1919. The first Australian professional associations appeared circa 1924. Educational establishments started to appear in 1939 along with a professional journal.
  29. 29. Professional Registration  In the absence of qualification chiropodists served time to learn the trade.  In North America, chiropodists became podiatrists and formed private podiatry training centres  Registered medical auxiliaries became registered professions in early 1960’s (UK)
  30. 30. Podiatry in Australia First chiropodists began trading in Australia (circa 1840) The number increased after the Great War (1918) then post World War II (1945) Change of name and closed profession (1967)
  31. 31. International Podiatry National Health Service (UK) became the biggest employer of chiropodists (1946) North America developed mainly private practice Australia and New Zealand reflected both systems The Federation internationale des podologues (F.I.P.) was founded in 1947 and included members from France, Switzerland and Belgium. Later in the 60s the association grew to include members from Spain, UK, Italy, Denmark, Germany, Austria, Sweden, Norway, Finland and the Netherlands.
  32. 32. Commonwealth of Australia Copyright Regulations 1969 WARNING This material has been copied and communicated to you by or on behalf of Cameron Kippen pursuant to Part VB of the Copyright Act 1968 (the Act). The material in this communication may be subject to copyright under the Act. Any further copying or communication of this material by you may be the subject of copyright protection under the Act. Do not remove this notice