ON INJURIES OF THE HEAD

第2章

2. In respect to thickness and thinness; the thinnest and weakest part of the whole head is the part about the bregma; and the bone there has the smallest and thinnest covering of flesh upon it, and the largest proportion of brain is situated in that region of the head.

And hence it happens that from similar or even smaller wounds and instruments, when a person is wounded to the same or a less degree, the bone of the head there is more contused, fractured, and depressed;and that injuries there are more deadly and more difficult to cure;and it is more difficult to save one's life in injuries there than in any other part of the head; that from having sustained a similar or even a less wound a man will die, and that, too, in a shorter space of time than from a wound in any other part of the head. For the brain about the bregma feels more quickly and strongly any mischief that may occur to the flesh or the bone; for the brain about the bregma is in largest quantity, and is covered by the thinnest bone and the least flesh. Of the other portions, the weakest is that about the temples;for it is the conjunction of the lower jaw with the cranium, and there is motion there up and down as at a joint; and the organ of hearing is near it; and further, a hollow and important vein runs along the temple. But the whole bone of the head behind the vertex and the ear is stronger than the whole anterior part, and the bone itself has a larger and deeper covering of flesh upon it. And hence it follows, that when exposed to the same or even greater injuries from instruments of the same or greater size, the bone is less liable to be fractured and depressed than elsewhere; and that in a fatal accident the patient will live longer when the wound is in the posterior part of the head than when elsewhere; and that pus takes longer time to form and penetrate through the bone to the brain, owing to the thickness of the bone; and moreover, as there is less brain in that part of the head, more persons who are wounded in the back part of the head escape than of those who wounded in the anterior part. And in fatal cases, a man will survive longer in winter than in summer, whatever be the part of the head in which the wound is situated.

Hippocrates

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