Enema syringe, Europe, 1701-1900
Treating patients via an enema dates back to ancient Egypt. It was a common treatment during the 1800s when stimulants such as tobacco and coffee were used alongside other substances. This piston-action enema syringe is made of pewter and was a multi-purpose tool. It has a vaginal nozzle attached and originally may have had a rectal one too. Enemas are now administered before certain surgery to wash out the lower bowel as a hygiene measure, or to introduce medications, salts or minerals into the body. In the past they were prescribed for complaints and ailments as minor as indigestion or headaches.
Related Themes and Topics
Glossary: genito-urinary medicine
The branch of medicine dealing with the genital and urinary organs.
Glossary: enema syringe
A syringe for adminstering enemas