Vicky Phelan arriving at the Dáil. She succesfully sued a US laboratory after she received incorrect results from a cervical cancer test. File photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Cancer screening is in the news for all the wrong reasons. The CervicalCheck scandal will be added to a rich strand of medical history examining the w(...)

In Alfred Crosby’s ‘The Columbian Exchange: Biological and Cultural Consequences of 1492’, published in 1972, he argued for a different way of looking at the impact of the voyages of discovery on both the Americas and Europe

A few weeks ago, the historian Alfred Crosby died at the age of 87. He may not be well known to readers of science pages but he should be: he pioneere(...)

Many women reacted strongly to Anton Mesmer’s magnetic therapies; some of them convulsing or falling unconscious.

In 1778 Anton Mesmer arrived in Paris. He had left Vienna under a cloud when his new practice of animal magnetism raised objections among medical prac(...)

Pie chart: One of William Playfair’s designs, representing the extent, population and revenue of the principal nations of Europe in 1804

I have a confession. I never actually considered the origin of graphs or pie charts. It never occurred to me that they had any history at all, I proba(...)

Members of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition  1914-17, led by Ernest Shackleton, drink a toast to ‘sweethearts and wives’ on board the Endurance. Photograph: Frank Hurley/Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge/Getty Images

So far, this winter has been colder than the last. Christmas scarves, hats and gloves have already been put to good use. The return to school means th(...)

Image: iStock/Getty Images

About two weeks ago my father became a cyborg. A “pocket” was cut into the skin of his chest and a combination pacemaker/defibrillator implanted. Wire(...)

A woman wearing a mask reacts at her garden which is located next to the chimneys of a coal-fired power plant in Shijiazhuang, Hebei province, China. Photograph: Reuters/Kim Kyung-Hoon

This newspaper recently highlighted the findings of the Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health. The commission pointed to the serious health burden(...)

 Christy Moore entertains some of the protesters at an Anti-Nuclear protest at Carnsore Point, Co Wexford, in August 1978. Photograph: Eddie Kelly

While the public war of words between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un seems to have quietened down, for those who rememb(...)

The emerging threat of peanut allergy.

As those of you with school-age children settle down again into the routine of packed lunches you will be well aware of the list of foods your child c(...)

 The Museo Nazionale del Cinema in Torino, Italy

Torino – Museo Nazionale del Cinema I think this may be my favourite museum ever. Housed in a former synagogue, the museum contains sections on the h(...)

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