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History of dermatology and venereology in Serbia - part III/1: Dermatovenereology in Serbia from 1881 - 1918

Serbischen Konigreiche von XII Jahrhundert an bis 1883. Berlin: Max Pasch; 1883. 6. Zakon o uređenju sanitetske struke i o čuvanju narodnog zdravlja [Law on the organization of the sanitary profession and public health care]. Srp Novine. 1881 Apr.10;49(80). 7. Zakon o uređenju sanitetske struke i o čuvanju narodnog zdravlja [Law on the organization of the sanitary profession and public health care]. Srp Novine. 1881 Apr. 6;49(76). 8. Zakon o uređenju sanitetske struke i o čuvanju narodnog zdravlja [Law on the organization of

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The First Serbian Dermatovenereologist - Jevrem Žujović

sanitary profession and public health care]. Srp Nar Nov 1881 Apr 4;49(75). 11. Zakon o uređenju sanitetske struke i o čuvanju narodnoga zdravlja [Law on the organization of the sanitary profession and public health care]. Srp Nar Nov 1881 Apr 10;49(80):čl.26. 12. Garašanin M. Pravila o regulisanju prostitucije [Prostitution regulation rules]. Nar Zdrav 1882;1:10-3. 13. Đorđević V. Laboremus! Pozdrav I kongresu srpskih lekara i prirodnjaka (prvih 100 godina u razvitku lekarske struke u Srbiji) [Greetings to the First

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Quackery in the Treatment of Syphilis in Serbia / Nadrilekari u lečenju sifilisa u srbiji

Abstract

During the multi-century Ottoman rule, there were no educated physicians in Serbia, and “folk healers” used to treat the sick. Just after the 3rd decade of the 19th century, when the first educated physicians came to Serbia, we can also speak about quackery. At that time, syphilis started spreading and some quacks became “specialists for syphilis”. They were most numerous in the North-East Serbia in the 4th and 5th decades of the 19th century. They represented a major problem, because people believed them more than they believed physicians, while the state authorities of just liberated country, tolerated them. The quacks were not familiar with the clinical features of syphilis, and mostly used mercury to treat it by fumigation and inhalation, rubbing it into the skin, proscribing mercury pills, while symptoms of severe, sometimes lethal intoxication were signs of successful treatment. They also used sarsaparilla. Authorities of the new Government often issued them permission to work, whereas professional control and prohibition of such treatment began in 1839, when the Health Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs was established.

The most famous quack, “specialist for syphilis”, was Gojko Marković, who was also a “physician” and the first director of the Hospital for the treatment of syphilis in Serbia during a certain period. A married couple, Gaja and Kita Savković, were also well known, as well as Stojan Milenković, a young man in the service of Prince Miloš. There were, of course, many adventurers, imposters, travelling Turkish and Greek physicians, Gipsies, fortune-tellers, old women, and ignorant people of various professions. Their work was banned by the Government.

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