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Can Bull Med Hist. 2006;23(2):457-76.

The evolution of the sanatorium: the first half-century, 1854-1904.

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Faculty of Medicine, University of Manitoba.


In the 19th century tuberculosis was the major threat to health in Europe and North America. It was thought to be caused by heredity compounded by one's way of life and, even when proved to be an infection, these factors were thought to identify who would catch it. In 1854 Hermann Brehmer asserted that he could cure tuberculosis with a regimen of fresh air, exercise and good nutrition in a sanatorium. Although the medical establishment initially rejected Brehmer's ideas the sanatorium movement steadily caught hold, and within two decades was supported by eminent physicians. Rest replaced Brehmer's exercise, as the key remedy. The sanatorium regimen put Galenic principles of hygiene into practice.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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