ISSN: 2149-2247 | E-ISSN: 2149-2549

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Ethics in Mental Disorder Treatment: How Ancient Greece Contributed to Modern Psychiatry [Erciyes Med J]
Erciyes Med J. 2020; 42(1): 117-118 | DOI: 10.14744/etd.2019.75547

Ethics in Mental Disorder Treatment: How Ancient Greece Contributed to Modern Psychiatry

Konstantinos Laios1, Spyros N. Michaleas1, Marianna Karamanou2
1Department of History of Medicine and Medical Deontology, University of Crete Faculty of Medicine, Crete, Greece
2Institute of Humanities in Medicine, University of Lausanne Faculty of Biology and Medicine, Lausanne, Switzerland

In the early 19th century, the French physician Philippe Pinel (1745–1826) propagated a humane treatment for the care of mentally ill patients, thereby founding the field of psychiatry. Pinel rejected the popular notion that mental illness was caused by demonic possession/other magical forces and unchained patients, subsequently proving that they could positively respond to a humane treatment. However, the humane treatment for mentally ill patients was introduced by ancient Greek physicians and philosophers. In the writings of Alcmaeon of Croton (5th century BC), Hippocrates (460–377 BC), Aretaeus of Cappadocia (c. 2nd century AD), and Soranus of Ephesus (98–138 AD), a rational approach can be found for mental illness and its treatment focusing on patients.

Keywords: Philippe Pinel, Hippocrates, moral treatment, history of psychiatry.

Konstantinos Laios, Spyros N. Michaleas, Marianna Karamanou. Ethics in Mental Disorder Treatment: How Ancient Greece Contributed to Modern Psychiatry. Erciyes Med J. 2020; 42(1): 117-118

Corresponding Author: Marianna Karamanou, Greece
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