Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Rene Laennec

Rene Laennec was born in Quimper, France in 1781. At the age of six he lost his mother and was then sent off by his father to live with various relatives. He was mostly raised by his uncle Dr. Guillaume Laennec, who was a doctor of medicine. At age 14 Rene started some medical studies and continued his studies in Paris while growing up. He then became a medical student at the Charite, a hospital in Paris. He got to work with some of the best doctors in France. at the Collège de France in 1822 Rene became the chair and professor of medicine in 1823. He continued to study medicine for the rest of this life and made more widely known the diseases Pneumonia and asthma with his invention of the stechoscope in 1819. This invention would greatly improve medical diagnoses since before the stethoscope a doctor would only place his ear to the patients chest. His stethoscope consisted of wood measureing almost 13 inches long and 1.5 inches in diameter with a brass tube in the middle. It was put together in three peices with a funnel shaped opening at the bottom. Other contributions Rene made to medicine would be originating the terms cirrhosis and melanoma, along with various other modern terms. Rene died August 13th, 1826.

Drawing of Laennec's stethoscope:

For an image of Laennec's stethoscope:

Image of sethoscope in 3 seperate parts:

For an image of a modern stethoscope:

For an image of Rene Laennec:

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