M. Balcells, V. Cisteré Neurosciences and History 2013;1(1):43-47
Type of article: ARCHIVE IMAGE
M. Balcells1, V. Cisteré2 1Department of Neurology. Hospital del Sagrat Cor, Barcelona, Spain. 2Museo Archivo Histórico. Sociedad Española de Neurología (SEN), Barcelona, Spain.
Introduction. In 1882, Luis Barraquer Roviralta (1855-1928) founded Spain’s first neurology department, which was known as the “Electrotherapeutic Dispensary”. This dynamic centre for neurological study was created at the same time as Jean-Martin Charcot’s Chair for Nervous Diseases in La Salpêtrière Hospital and The Neurological Institute of Vienna under Heinrich Obersteiner. Barraquer Roviralta compiled a vast archive of clinical and anatomical photographs, including some 2000 images which he took and developed himself.
Method. In this article, we present and analyse the photographs of Luis Barraquer Roviralta, providing an explanation of their medical and historical contexts. (These images are now kept by the Spanish Society of Neurology’s historical archive, MAH SEN).
Results. Items in the collection can be divided into three categories: anatomical pathology, clinical radiology, and clinical aspects in neurological patients. We observe that a substantial part of the photographic collection is dedicated to cases of tabetic arthropathy, which was very prevalent during this period.
Discussion. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Barraquer Roviralta created a sizeable collection of photographs that he used for illustrating clinical signs, providing anatomical and pathological definitions of neurological diseases, documenting his publications and research, and for teaching purposes.
History of neurology, history of photography, medical illustrations, L. Barraquer Roviralta.
Neurosciences and History 2013;1(1):43-47
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