Talk:Bimaristan

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Life expectancy claims[edit]

Please see discussion at Talk:Islamic Golden Age#Claims on life expectancy. —Syncategoremata (talk) 12:03, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

Stub and rework[edit]

For background information, please see RFC/U and Cleanup. With 79 edits, User:Jagged 85 is the main contributor to this article by far (User:Dialectric, the 2nd ranked user who has 9 edits to his name, has been doing clean-up work). The article is not tagged, although, it will be shown, it contains the same errors as the other articles expanded by Jagged 85.

Unverified key claims[edit]

The article contains many claims about Muslim achievements or preeminence without providing its sources.

Earliest Bimarestan

The article says:

The oldest recorded Bimarestan is of Gundishapur, established in 3rd century by Shapur I the Sasanian emperor, in present day Khuzestan province of Iran. After Sassanian Iran was conquered by Muslim Arab armies in 638, the Bimaristan survived the change of rulers and evolved into a public hospital with medical university and psychiatric facilities over the centuries under Muslim physicians.

But the article does cite no source for this key claim.

Specialisation and free of charge

The article says:

The first Bimaristan after the Gundishapur was founded in 707 by the Muslim caliph al-Waleed bin Abdel Malek in Damascus. At the time, most Islamic hospitals had doctors that diagnosed and treated all patients, but the Bimaristan was unique in that it had doctors that specialized in certain diseases. Originally, these health centers were specifically for patients with specific afflictions such as pestilence and blindness, and all services were free of charge.

But the article does cite no source for these key claims.

Scientific methodology

The article says:

Unlike in Greek temples to healing gods, the clerics working in these facilities employed scientific methodology in their treatment of patients.

But the article does cite no source for this key claim.

Capacity of Qalawun Hospital

The article says:

Muslim physicians set up some of the earliest dedicated hospitals. In the medieval Islamic world, hospitals were built in all major cities; in Cairo for example, the Qalawun Hospital could care for 8,000 patients, and a staff that included physicians, pharmacists, and nurses.

There is no source cited and, with a bit common sense and background knowledge, this claim appears vastly exaggerated, see here for a detailed discussion.

Misuse of sources[edit]

Hospital of Cairo

The article says:

The largest hospital of the Middle Ages and pre-modern era was built in Cairo, Egypt, by Sultan Qalaun al-Mansur in 1285.

The source cited is somewhat difficult to identify, but must be:

Durant, Will (1950), The Story of Civilization IV: The Age of Faith, Simon and Shuster, New York, pp. 330–1

Durant writes:

In Cairo, in 1285, Sultan Qalaun began the Maristan al-Mansur, the greatest hospital of the Middle Ages.

So contrary to the article, Durant's claim – itself unsourced btw – is confined to the Middle Ages (500-1500), not the entire period of humanity up to 1500.

Ambulance

The article says:

By the 10th century, doctors were often assigned to mobile medical teams to treat patients outside of the hospital. For example, Ali Ibn Isa assigned Sinan ibn Thabit the task of sending doctors to treat the inmates of prisons, who were likely to have diseases "in view of their numbers and the harshness of their whereabouts." He also asked Sinan to send a mobile medical team to tour the countryside of southern Iraq and treat the residents there, whether Muslim or non-Muslim, as well as the cattle.

The source cited was:

Crone, Patricia (2005), Medieval Islamic Political Thought, Edinburgh University Press, p. 310, ISBN 0748621946

But wouldn't it be certainly important to add that, according to Crone, Ali Ibn Isa ordered Muslims to be treated with priority over non-Muslims?

Female physicians

The article says:

Muslim hospitals were also the first to employ female physicians, the most famous being two female physicians from the Banu Zuhr family who served the Almohad ruler Abu Yusuf Ya'qub al-Mansur in the 12th century.[

The source cited was:

The Art as a Profession, United States National Library of Medicine

But the linked article does not claim that Muslim hospitals were the first to employ female staff:

There were families of physicians in which the training was primarily within the family. The Bakhtishu` family is the most obvious, but there were also many others, such as the Ibn Zuhr family consisting of 5 generations of Spanish physicians, including two women physicians who served the household of the Almohad ruler Abu Yusuf Ya`qub al-Mansur, who ruled from 1184 to 1199 (580-595 H). There were self-taught physicians, such as Ibn Sina, who claimed to be self-taught in medicine though he studied other subjects with masters.

Dysfunctions in the brain

Cause of concern, no. 7 The section says:

This positive neuroethical understanding of mental health consequently led to the establishment of the first psychiatric hospitals in the medieval Islamic world from the 8th century,[36] and an early scientific understanding of psychology by medieval Muslim physicians and psychologists, who discovered that mental disorders are caused by dysfunctions in the brain.[37]

The source cited was:

37: Youssef, Hanafy A.; Youssef, Fatma A.; Dening, T. R. (1996), "Evidence for the existence of schizophrenia in medieval Islamic society", History of Psychiatry 7 (25): 55–62 (59)

However, Youssef et al. argue that Muslim physicians only suspected dysfunctions in the brain and judged schizophrenia more in terms of social deviation rather than biological dysfunction:

Medieval Islamic physicians did not have a clear biological model of mental illness, although they suspected dysfunction of the brain. For them, the insane had lost touch with reality and had lost their reason. We propose a rather controversial definition for schizophrenia in medieval Islamic society; namely that it is a deviation from the usual cultural and social norms.

Neither here nor elsewhere in the entire article it is claimed that these doctors were driven by an "early scientific understanding of psychology"; in fact the terms "scientific", "neuroscience" and "psychology" don't even appear once in the article.

Conclusion

The same approach as elsewhere, analysed in detail here. Many of the flawed claims found here were introduced also into a multitude of articles by senseless copy and paste techniques, one and the same claim into up to 14 articles (!!) as been found out. Gun Powder Ma (talk) 21:12, 12 April 2011 (UTC)

Comments[edit]

2017 merge proposal[edit]

The section Bimaristan#Overview currently duplicates Medicine_in_the_medieval_Islamic_world#Hospitals. I propose that it should be removed from this page, as it is not too long in the main article. This would leave the page Bimaristan about the derivation and usage of that word, like the page Dar al-Shifa. – Fayenatic London 09:50, 27 September 2017 (UTC)