Bernardino Ramazzini

Bernardino Ramazzini

Ramazzini, Bernardino, 1633-1717, Italian physician. He was professor at Modena (1682-1700) and at Padua until 1714. He is often called the father of industrial medicine, and his De Morbis Artificium was the first systematic exposition of occupational disease. Ramazzini saw the relationship between various metals and the symptoms of metallic poisoning that developed in the artisans who worked with them, and he recognized that paints were a factor in the poisoning of painters. He also made studies of diseases in other occupations (e.g., lung diseases of miners, eye conditions of printers). Although most physicians of that period prescribed cinchona bark (the source of quinine) for every type of fever, Ramazzini opposed such indiscriminate use of the drug and correctly reserved it for the treatment of malarial attacks only. He was also an epidemiologist; he described several plagues that occurred in his region.
Bernardino Ramazzini (1633-11-03 - 1714-11-05) was an Italian physician.

Born in Carpi, Ramazzini was an early proponent of the use of cinchona bark (from which quinine is derived) in the treatment of Malaria. His most important contribution to medicine was his work on occupational diseases called De Morbis Artificum Diatriba (Diseases of Workers) which outlined the health hazards of chemicals, dust, metals, and other agents encountered by workers in 52 occupations. This was one of the founding and seminal works of occupational medicine and played a substantial role in its development. He served as professor of medicine at the University of Padua from 1700 until his death.

In regards to malaria, Ramazzini was one of the first to support the use of the quinine-rich bark cinchona. Many falsely claimed that quinine was toxic and ineffective, but Ramazzini recognized its importance. He is quoted, "It [quinine] did for medicine what gun powder did for war.

He died in Padua in 1714.


  • Essai sur les Maladies de Disseus. Original translation from Latin in "De Mortis Artificum" by M. De Foureau
  • Altschuler, Eric Lewin "Ramazzini and writer's cramp". Lancet 365 (9463): 938.
  • Marin, V Terribile Wiel; Bellinati C, Panetto M, Zanchin G (2003). "Bernardino Ramazzini lies in Padua". Lancet 362 (9396): 1680.
  • Franco, G (1999). "Ramazzini and workers' health". Lancet 354 (9181): 858-61.
  • (1969). "Bernardini Ramazzini (1633-1714) physician of the tradesmen". JAMA 210 (13): 2391-2.
  • Bisetti, A A (1988). "Bernardino Ramazzini and occupational lung medicine". Ann. N. Y. Acad. Sci. 534 1029-37.
  • Zanchin, Giorgio; Capitanio Mariatonia, Panetto Monica, Visentin Guido, Marin Vito Terr (2005). "Bernardino Ramazzini rests in Padua". Vesalius : acta internationales historiae medicinae 11 (1): 15-20.
  • Hook, G E (1995). "Ramazzini: father of environmental health?". Environ. Health Perspect. 103 (11): 982-3.
  • Pope, Malcolm H (2004). "Bernardino Ramazzini: the father of occupational medicine". Spine 29 (20): 2335-8.


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