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Clin Orthop Relat Res. 1997 Jan;(334):374-9.

Patron saints of medicine.

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Department of Surgery (Orthopedics), College of Medicine, University of Arizona, Tucson, USA.


From the earliest times, medical practitioners have sought divine help and support to aid them as they go about their busy rounds. In the early Christian era, 4 individuals were singled out as patron saints of medicine, and particularly of physicians and surgeons. These men were all natives of Asia Minor; they were all educated in the Greek medical tradition; and they were all busy practitioners. They were the Apostle Luke, Saints Cosmas and Damian and Saint Panteleimon. Through the centuries, they have served as worthy role models for the physicians who have invoked their aide.

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