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U=(N/T)M*G: Leech

It’s no secret that modern medicine is a strange mix of old and new practices. Re-purposing is very much part of medicine too. Ancient practices like leeches for bloodletting are now used today for bloodletting. Ha! Nothing new under the sun, I guess.

While that sentiment may be true, we are finding new ways to use what we have on our world all the time. From the old stand-by of breaking leg bones to make them longer, to using shit in medicine, humanity has turned ancient “cures” into actual, medically sound, treatments as our technology and intelligence advance.

Helminthic therapy is one such example. Parasites to fight autoimmune diseases. Poison to fight multiple scoliosis in a radical procedure. Ice to help in cardiac arrest. Even growing mosquitoes to fight destructive Zika. Wild, but the one that takes the cake is the brain-eating parasite that medical researchers are working on to fight cancer.

This all, I’m certain, is the tip of the iceberg. I wonder what weird, strange, unorthodox medicine is tucked away in labs, waiting for trails to complete, for approval to use on humanity. What kind of world will ours be like, ten years, a hundred, a thousand from now?

Once we conquer disease that share our world, what new ailments will fill the gap? What unique or overhauled procedures will we be forced to find to combat them? What medicine will we still use all those years from now in the same way we use leeches today?

I hope the ideas are infectious, to pun badly.

-T.A. Creech

Author of LGBT romance and speculative fiction.


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