July 7th, 2012

Medicine and culture in 10th-century Cordoba

My POV character is the apprentice to a stranded time traveler who's chosen to settle down in Cordoba around 940 AD. She's working as a doctor/midwife. What do I need to know about the local level of medical expertise? What modern/futuristic medical practices would be totally alien to the locals? What could they introduce successfully, and what would be met with resistance? General details for life in this place and time would also be much appreciated.

I've read The Ornament of the World, the wikipedia page, and a bunch of articles found by googling 'medieval Muslim medicine.' I know the contemporary doctors would have at least tried washing their hands and patient's wounds, though there would have been no such concept as sterile conditions. I'm sure there's plenty I'm missing, though.

leg fracture in result of a car crash (initial treatment and long-term effects)

Hiya, guys! I'm writing a fic, set in roundabout 2007 in the US. One of the main characters gets injured in a car crash (I've written it as a t-bone crash, but that can be changed if need be). He's supposed to suffer a leg injury, a fracture to be exact, that will have long-term effects. Nothing to severe, residual pain and numbness, maybe stiff limbs. I'm not set on much, and I'm willing to change the details, but I want it to be as realistic as possible.

What I'm planing to inflict on the poor guy right now is a femural fracture, partly because I found two 100-pages-essays about treatment and possible effects. What I want to know now is the following:

- Is it likely for a femural fracture to occur in a t-bone-crash? The way I've written it so far, the other car crashed into the character's car on the driver's side, on purpose, on an intersection. For me as a complete medical layman (laywoman? XD), it sounds logical that the femur would break from an impact like that?

- What other injuries would occur alongside with it? How would these injuries, uh, interact with each other?

- Is there anyone around who DOES deal with permanent injury because of such a fracture themselves? I'd appreciate any and all descriptions of the sensations related to the long-term effects, the sort of pain or uncomfortableness that comes with it, and so on. Really, anything will help!

I searched on Google and Bing, using several combinations of "t-bone crash injuries", "side impact car crash injuries", "permanent (leg) injury car crash", "femoral fracture car crash", "femoral fracture t-bone crash", "femoral fracture long-term effects". Mostly, that brought up insurance lawyers. XD Also, I searched for the same things on the German versions of both websites, which mostly gave me auto test reports.