Who Was The First Doctor In The World?

Who was the first medical doctor in the world

Who was the first medical doctor in the world?

Have you ever wondered who was the first physician or health practitioner in the globe? 

Take a thought to imagine what spurred his medical drive. How did he start? What initiated the art of medicine in the world? Was he successful in his first venture? 

There are lots of questions that can arrive from who was the first doctor in the world. 

And you’ve got nothing to worry as we’d answer every single question here. 

In this episode of our InspireMe series, you’d be learning about the first doctor in the world. 

You’d know every teeny tiny detail about how his adventure started, things he did and many more from this episode! 

In case you missed out, here are our previous posts on our InspireMe (Biography) series; 

You ready for this awesome guide? Then let’s get started right away!

Who is a Medical Doctor?

A medical doctor is a professional individual who has been trained and certified to help save sick patients and restore human’s health to optimal state. 

Their tasks involve engaging with patients, taking history and diagnoses from their symptoms, and providing solutions to health problems. 

Who was the First Medical Doctor in the World? 

Medicine is a very vital aspect to the survival of Man. Have you ever thought how the number of deaths would have drastically increased if there were no medical practices? 

Imagine the large number of people who’ll die regularly from little diseases which could be solved easily using a drug or by health care practices. It’ll be absurd right?

We enjoy a good life presently. One where a visit to a good doctor can help prevent diseases and also solve health problems. 

But all this that we’re privileged to have- the good healthcare, well-trained medical practioners- came to be, because of a Greek physician who existed around 460BC – 375BC. 

His name? Hippocrates of Kos- the first doctor in the world! 

Who is Hippocrates the first doctor in the world? 

The Greek philosopher and science genius, Hippocrates, is known to have deposited the core foundation of the present day medicine. 

His works came during a period when medical treatments were labeled inappropriate and diseases thought to be caused by punishments from the gods or a revenge strategy from someone. 

Hippocratic initiated the first ever medical school to train doctors. This core reason made him to become the first doctor in the world as well as the father of medicine. 

Hippocrates who was the first doctor in the world, laid a very important role in medicine. He was a scientist and mathematician, but that didn’t hinder his curiosity about the human body. 

He started off with the art of planting. He’d work super long hours outside till night. His focus at that time was majorly in products from the earth like wild oats, mushrooms, etc. 

Even while the philosopher was into planting, he didn’t only consume but he’d always distinguish the eatable plants that were good for the stable health from those who weren’t. 

Did Hippocrates focus only on plants? Absolutely not! He was also into animals throughout his life and also learning from them. His expertise in the field crops didn’t helped to invent new plant extracts which he used to cure different ailments. 

His works were super helpful as it cured numerous dreadful diseases and saved the lives of those close to him. Hippocrates was indeed a live saver! 

But he didn’t just stop there. Hippocrates was also involved in what is known now as public health campaigns. He’d educate the people of his time about the different diesels and their method of prevention. 

He was so enthusiastic about the health of the people and will offen time teach them how to eat right and it’s benefits. 

Hippocrates Biography 

History had it that the Hippocrates who was the first doctor in the world, was born around 460BC on a Greek island in Kos, hence his name, Hippocrates of Kos.

His biography was at time written by Soranus of Ephesus, also a Greek physician at that time who knew a lot about him. 

According to Soranus, the father of Hippocrates was Heradidus, also a physician, while his mother was Paraxitela. His two sons were Thessalian, Dracula, who happened to be his students. 

How did the first doctor in the world start his journey into medicine? 

Hippocrates developed interest in medicine from his father and grandfather (Hippocrates I). Asides that, he also studied other subjects of interest with Gorgias and Democritus. 

Hippocrates denoted that a complete knowledge of the human body was essential for medicine. Throughout his entire life, he practiced medicine and even sacrificed a lot by traveling far distances just to help sick people get well again. 

Hippocratic theory 

In the olden times, diseases were believed to be as a result of punishments by the gods or from unnatural means. 

However, Hippocrates deduced that sickness and ailments were as a result of natural means like diet, environment, habits, and not superstitious beliefs like people thought.

The disciples of Pythagorean’s also gave him the credit of being the first physician to combine philosophy and medicine. 

Troubles he faced 

You can regard the Healthcare sector in the present day world to be served on a platter of gold. But it wasn’t the same far back in history. The physicians of old passed through toils to get us to the level where we are medically. 

Previously, it was a big taboo to dissect humans. And as such, Hippocrates knowledge of anatomy and physiology was little. However, the genius fought to produce knowledge which are presently used in health care. 

The Ancient Greek medical schools in dealing with diseases had two programs- Koan and Knidian. The latter dealt with the diagnoses of ailments while the latter dealt with its application and treatment. It’s nucleus was in prognoses and not diagnoses. 

Beliefs about feeding 

Hippocrates, the first doctor in the world, was however, indifferent in the benefit of drugs or specialized treatment on diseases. 

His focus was on general treatment and he recommended fasting and also a combination of Vineagar and honey for good living. 

Serving as examples to others 

The Hippocratic medicine served as, and still remains the leader in the healthcare industry. His practice was strictly expertise, self-disciplined and careful. 

The hipocratic work on the physician commends that doctors should always be neat, focused, insightful and honest. 

Hippocrates was so disciplined as he always followed a specific procedure in bandaging and splinting methods in the operating room. 

Keeping knowledge for other generations 

Hippocrates, who was the first doctor in the world, didn’t keep all his findings to himself. He passed on a good amount of medical knowledge through the careful recording of notes for many illnesses and symptoms including fever, pains, excretions, etc. 

He was so bent on getting the correct diagnosis and history taking that he’d often measure the patients heartbeat to find out if they’re lying or not. 

Hippocrates, the First Doctor in the world and his contributions to Medicine 


1. Hippocratic fingers 

Hippocrates took the credit as the first physician to describe the clubbing of fingers which it’s a critical diagnostic test for lung disease, cyanosis heart diseases and lung cancer. And because of this, the sign was names as the Hippocratic finger. 

2.Categorization of illnesses 

Hippocrates was the first doctor to classify diseases into four; acute, endemic, epidemic, and chronic. 

Acute diseases- have short time span and are always chronic. They’re usually sudden. Examples include Acute appendicitis, acute myocardial infarction, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, etc.

Chronic- this class of diesels persists Kong’s Ethan acute and often affect multiple areas of the body. They don’t always respond to immediate therapy. Examples are mostly non-communicable diseases like hypertension, cancers, diabetes, Asthma, chronic kidney disease, epilepsy, etc. 

Endemic- these ones affect a population and is around a specific geographic area. For example, malaria is popular around Africa, chicken pox, etc. 

Epidemic- this is the opposite of endemic. It affects a large population on a short period. Examples include meningococcal infections, Ebola, influenza, and different viral outbreaks.

3. Diseases of rectum 

Hippocrates sschool of Medicine was credited as the first to describe the diseases of the human rectum and it’s treatment. They laid the foundational knowledge for haemorrhoids, which were thought to be excess bike and phlegm. 

4. Lifestyle medicine 

Hippocrates enthusiasm for plants and advocacy on good nutrition and exercise became the foundation for the present day lifestyle medicine. Some of his popular but misquoted sayings are;  

Let food become your therapy and therapy your food”. “Walking is man’s best cure”. 

5. Endoscopy 

Endoscopy is a medical technique of looking inside the human body to diagnose inadequacies and abnormal structures. Hippocrates was the first doctor in the world to invent this technique and till date, it’s in use to detect diseases. 

6. Medical books 

Are you wondering who authored the first medical books? It’s Hippocrates! He shared most of his knowledge by authoring several books on science and medicine.

A prominent example is the Hippocratic corpus which was written in Greek and contained an assembly of more than 70 diseases, their symptoms and cure. 

7. Hippocratic oath- who was the first doctor in the world 

Washington University medical students taking the Hippocratic oath at the white coat ceremony in 2014. Source: aamc.org

One of the most popular practices still used even in present day medical schools is the Hippocratic oath. This allegiance is a formative paperwork on medical ethics. Before officially becoming a medical doctor, students are made to swear by this oath to uphold all the medical ethics and traditions.

Lessons To Learn From The First Doctor in the World 

Like we always do in every Inspireme series, here are some key lessons to learn from the Great Physician, Hippocrates; 

Commitment to helping others produced success 

Think about the present geniuses in the world with the likes of Mark Zuckerberg, Elon musks, etc. You’d find that what spurred their success was a constant drive to help and provide for the needs of others. 

They all started their companies with the goal of solving world  problems. And that’s exactly what helped Hippocrates! 

Even Robert Kiyosaki in his popular book, Rich dad, poor dad stated that to become successful, you should be intelligent about solving other people’s problems. Money gotten without this means is likely to be gone. 

Hippocrates a well educated scholar and science enthusiast at that time, didn’t focus only on his wellness. He instead used his knowledge of plants to educate people on good diet habits. Today, he’s known as the father of nutritional medicine. 

His drive for medicine served as the foundation for the fame and success he achieved. Even when it was uncomfortable, Hippocrates would journey long distances just to help out with someone’s health problem. 

In all, he was very much interested in the health of everyone, and looked for ways to better medicine all through his life! 

What do you do

Always think of ways in which your expertise can be of help to people. If you want to be successful and be satisfied by it, then look for innovative ways to solve other’s problems. By doing that, you’d bring solutions that the world needs and get success in return! 

Final thoughts on the first doctor in the world 

Medical doctors and health practioners play a very signifcant role in the survival of man. They help prevent diseases by diagnosis, save patients from dying and by research, help us to live better lives! 

But all these started from the Greek Philosopher; Hippocrates who was the first doctor in the world because of the solid foundation he laid for Medicine. 

In this episode, we’ve looked so far at Hippocrates biography, we’ve also givens key lessons to learn as well as andwered the question “who was the first doctor in the world?”! 

What have you learnt from Hippocrates, who was the first doctor in the world? 

2 Comments

  1. Wow. Nice information you’ve got here. Hippocrates was and still remains a legend when it comes to the history of Medicine. Thanks for such an insightful post, and yes, those lessons on the first doctor in the world are way inspiringgg. Keep up the good work!

  2. Hippocrates still us and will remain a genius as far as medicine is concerned. His impact during his time is still felt till now. I would love to do something to health sector that people will remember even in years to come. Thanks for this guide, Emmanuel. And keep up the good work!

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