Medicine in the Siedem Królestw, and whole of the known world, often play a big role in the quality of life of its inhabitants. In addition to the common Healers, midwives and bonesetters, one can find a number of orders practising real medicine, in particular the Maester of the Cytadela.
Common folks, usually do not have access to Maester services like rich and noble houses do and rely on traveling barbers, the local healers and midwives and their knowledge of herbs.
Wounds are often cleaned with boiling wine or treated with Myrish fire or firemilk, both of which burn on contact. Maggots may be used if a wound is going rotten, as the maggots eat out the rotten parts. Maestrzy also learn to stitch wounds closed and can use poultices containing mustard seeds, nettles, and bread mould to prevent infection. Leeches are also used to drain bad blood that builds up in wounds. Potions containing opiated such as the milk of poppy or the vinsonge are employed to fight the pain. Vinegar is used as common disinfectant for surgical instruments.
Fractured limbs are immobilized using plasters untill the bones are joined up. Moon tea is used as contraception and to deal with unwanted pregnancies.
Diseases & Illness
A wide range of minor colds, fevers, and fluxes are rarely deadly or even seriously debilitating. The bloody flux can kill, however. Whores often carry unpleasant poxes, and the sufferers rarely find much sympathy. Fortunately, most are minor if not embarrassing.
A number of diseases are primarily of childhood. Redspots is common, but it never kills anyone over the age of ten, and once you have had it, you are immune. But adults who did not contract it in childhood remain at risk of infection. Szara łuszczyca is rarely fatal to children, but nearly always fatal to adults. It makes the skin grey and hard as stone and often disfigures survivors.
List of known Diseases & Illness:
- Bloody flux.
- The Great Spring Sickness.
- Szara łuszczyca.
- Grey plague.
Many poisons used through out the Siedem Królestw and in the East. Although the Maester of the Cytadela study the histories and qualities of various poisons in addition to their healing arts, their use seems more widespread in the free cities and their assassins guilds. Poisons regarded with fear and loathing by noble Rycerzs and high lords alike in feudal society of the Siedem Królestw, and regarded as vile weapon used by the debauched sots of the Wolne Miasta—and is also seen as a weapon of bastards and women. Of course, much of this is posturing.
Common poisons include nightshade and powdered greycap, derived from a plant and a toadstool, respectively. Animal and insect venoms, such as basilisk and manticore venom, are also known, if harder to gather. Manticore venom is particularly vicious and can be treated to make it work slower, making its victim die in slow agony. Rare poisons include the Strangler, made from a plant found only in the Jade Sea. It kills by closing the windpipe, suffocating the victim. It is a poison with which to kill a king, and kings know that, one reason for food-tasters. The tears of Lys is odorless and colorless, and kills by attacking the stomach and bowels. There are also ambiguous poisons. Moon tea aborts pregnancies, which makes some maesters reluctant to call it a medicine. Sweetsleep brings deep sleep in small doses, but larger ones kill. Indeed, large enough doses of most medicines kill; the problem with sweetsleep is that the fatal dose is still quite small. A maester must be very careful when administering it.
Poisons are commonly administered to victims in food or drink, which also serve to mask their taste and odor. Noble kitchens are often guarded because of this, and food tasters employed to protect their masters’ lives with their own. Even still, clever poisoners manage to slip past the safeguards from time to time, and at least as many nobles deaths are caused by a poisoned cup or dish as a bloodied blade, if not more so. Poison may also be delivered by dosing food or drink, coating a weapon, or even through the skin.
List of known posions:
- Basilisk venom.
- Demon's dance.
- Heart's bane.
- Manticore venom.
- Tears of Lys.
- The Strangler.
- Widow's blood.
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