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Bernardino Ramazzini

Bernardino Ramazzini
Bernardino Ramazzini
Born 3 November 1633
Died 5 November 1714
Nationality Italian
Fields medicine
Institutions University of Modena, University of Padua
Alma mater University of Parma
Known for cinchona, occupational medicine
Bernardino Ramazzini

(3 November 1633 – 5 November 1714) was an Italian physician.(Italian pronunciation: ['bernardino ramat'tsini])

Ramazzini was an early proponent of the use of cinchona bark (from which quinine is derived) in the treatment of Malaria. His most important contribution to medicine was his book on occupational diseases, De Morbis Artificum Diatriba ("Diseases of Workers").


  • Life 1
  • Career 2
    • Occupational medicine 2.1
    • Malaria 2.2
    • Cancer 2.3
  • Death 3
  • Acknowledgement 4
  • References 5
  • Bibliography 6
  • External links 7


Ramazzini was born in Carpi on 3 November 1633. He studied medicine at the University of Parma, where his interest in occupational diseases began.


He was appointed to the chair of theory of medicine at University of Modena in 1682 then served as professor of medicine at the University of Padua from 1700 until his death. He is often called "the father of occupational medicine" [1][2]

The first edition of De Morbis was published in 1700 in Modena, the second in 1713 in Padua.

Occupational medicine

De morbis artificum diatriba, 1745

His book on occupational diseases, De Morbis Artificum Diatriba (Diseases of Workers) outlined the health hazards of chemicals, dust, metals, repetitive or violent motions, odd postures, and other disease-causative agents encountered by workers in 52 occupations.[3] This was one of the founding and seminal works of occupational medicine and played a substantial role in its development.[1] [2]

He proposed that physicians should extend the list of questions that Hippocrates recommended they ask their patients by adding, "What is your occupation?".[1]


In regards to malaria, Ramazzini was one of the first to support the use of the quinine-rich bark cinchona. Many falsely claimed that quinine was toxic and ineffective, but Ramazzini recognized its importance. He is quoted, "It [quinine] did for medicine what gun powder did for war."[4]


In 1713, Bernardino Ramazzini said that nuns developed breast cancer at a higher rate than married women because they did not engage in sexual intercourse, and the "unnatural" lack of sexual activity caused instability of the breast tissues that sometimes developed into breast cancer.[5]


Ramazzini died in Padua on 5 November 1714.[2][6]


In a lifestyle article "Sitting can lead to an early death," the writer acknowledged Ramazzini's pioneering study of this field in the 17th century.[7]


  1. ^ a b c Gochfeld, Michael (February 2005). "Chronologic history of occupational medicine". Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine / American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine 47 (2): 96–114.   A PDF copy of the article.
  2. ^ a b c Ramazzini, Bernardino (1 September 2001). "VOICES FROM THE PAST – De Morbis Artificum Diatriba (Diseases of Workers)". Am J Public Health 91 (9): 1380–1382.   The article contains excerpts from the English translation by Wilmer Cave Wright (Chicago: University of Chicago Press; 1940) based on the Latin text of 1713, and includes a biographical note, Bernardino Ramazzini: The Father of Occupational Medicine, by Giuliano Franco, MD and Francesca Franco MD, MPH
  3. ^ Cockayne, Emily (2007). Hubbub: Filth Noise & Stench in England. Yale University Press. p. 61.  
  4. ^ Poser, Charles M; Bruyn, GW (1999). An illustrated history of malaria.  
  5. ^ Olson, James Stuart (2002). Bathsheba's breast: women, cancer & history. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 32–33.  
  6. ^ "History". Collegium Ramazzini. Retrieved 3 March 2009.  History (of Occupational Medicine) with notes on the life of Ramazzini.
  7. ^ Han, Esther (28 March 2012) Sitting can lead to an early death. Sydney Morning Herald


  • Essai sur les Maladies de Disseus. Original translation from Latin in "De Mortis Artificum" by M. De Foureau
  • Altschuler, Eric Lewin (2005). "Ramazzini and writer's cramp".  
  • Marin, V Terribile Wiel; Bellinati C; Panetto M; Zanchin G (November 2003). "Bernardino Ramazzini lies in Padua".  
  • Franco, G (September 1999). "Ramazzini and workers' health".  
  • "Bernardini Ramazzini (1633–1714) physician of the tradesmen".  
  • Bisetti, A A (1988). "Bernardino Ramazzini and occupational lung medicine".  
  • Zanchin, Giorgio; Capitanio Mariatonia; Panetto Monica; Visentin Guido; Marin Vito Terrbile Wiel (June 2005). "Bernardino Ramazzini rests in Padua".  
  • Hook, G E (November 1995). "Ramazzini: father of environmental health?".  
  • Pope, Malcolm H (October 2004). "Bernardino Ramazzini: the father of occupational medicine".  

External links

  • Ramazzini Collegium The Collegium supplies information on risks and prevention of injury and disease attributable to the workplace and the environment.
  • Some places and memories related to Ramazzini.
  • [2]. Presentations and publications on Ramazzini's famed work "De Morbis Artificum Diatriba"
  • Celebrazioni del tricentenario della morte
  • Tercentenary ot the death
  • De fontium mutinensium admiranda scaturigine ; tractatus physico-hydro-staticus. - full digital facsimile at Linda Hall Library
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