The Symbiosis between Medicine and Energy

On Friday 28th November at 7.30 pm, Professor Francis Duck of the University of Bath and lately of the RUH Bath will speak on “How Physics has put Energy into Medicine”, as part of the BRLSI Science Group series on Energy.
The idea of “energy” was entirely novel when Daniel Bernouilli calculated the work of the heart in 1753, and his results were largely rejected by physiologists and doctors for over a century. Then, as the concept of the conservation of energy developed, it was applied to physiology, finally removing vitalism as a model on which doctors could base their treatment of disease. Today, energy is focused into the body in all hospitals, to aid healing, to destroy cancer and to create images, using protons and x-rays, ultraviolet radiation and lasers, microwaves and radiofrequency radiation, ultrasound and electrical stimulation. This talk will explore the historical and present symbiosis between medicine and energy, now so deeply entwined that the physics origins of the links have been largely forgotten.