From Big Medical Encyclopedia

SORCERY — illegal occupation doctoring as a profession by the persons who do not have properly the certified medical education. The term «sorcery» came from the Old Russian words «sorcerer», «znatets» — the person knowing the business; this derivative of the word «nobility» contacted also doctoring. 3 is more ancient. it was widespread among all people and at early stages did not separate from traditional medicine. Sorcerers used knowledge of curative properties of plants, animal products, minerals accumulated many centuries, and also experience of the help to the patient and care of it. Ritual ceremonies (plots, spells, etc.) in certain cases made positive psychotherapeutic impact. Some of the applied means and methods (bilberry at ponosa, onions and garlic for the prevention of a scurvy, an immobilization of the injured extremity, massage, bloodletting, etc.) were rational and afterwards entered scientific medicine (see. Traditional medicine ).

In process of accumulation of experience the sorcerers-lechiteli who chose certain directions of the activity which passed from father to son were allocated: in Russia it is bone-setters, rudometa, krovopuskatel, internal and kilny (specialists in reposition of hernias) put the master, etc. With development of class society 3. it is more and more used by religion. Attendants of cults, using superstitions, beliefs in an origin of diseases from evil spirits, spread ideas of healers wonder-workers, invested them an aura of sanctity. 3. lost communication with the primitive traditional medicine which generated it, became means of a profit.

With development of scientific medicine 3., not able to explain the valid reasons of diseases, incapable to save the person from sufferings, becomes one of the most harmful remnants. In the capitalist states in which the qualified medical aid owing to its high cost is a little available to poor segments of the population a part of patients resorts to the help and councils of persons, the activity reviving 3. Its forms and manifestations can be the most different depending on household, national traditions, level of culture and other conditions.

In the USSR where care of increase in material well-being and health of workers is the main social task of the Communist Party and Soviet government, and medical aid is free and public, there is no soil for superstitions, znakharsky «doctoring», religious prejudices. To fight against 3. also growth of the general culture, materialistic outlook promotes.

Occupation medical practice as a profession by the persons who do not have medical educations is considered by the Soviet legislation as illegal doctoring, punishment for a cut is prescribed by Art. 221 of UK RSFSR and the relevant articles of the Criminal Code of other federal republics. If actions of sorcerers result unhealthy from a sick effect (deterioration in disease, its transition in hron, a form, injuries, omission of terms for medical intervention etc.) or there comes the death of the patient, guilty persons are subject to criminal liability on set — and for illegal doctoring, and for the corresponding crime against life and health. In such cases the court is carried out. - medical examination, edges resolves the following issues: as the receptions used by the sorcerer objectively influenced health of patients whether there is relationship of cause and effect between them and deterioration during a disease or approach of death of the patient, whether terms for rendering medical aid in what effects and in what degree the harm done to health of the patient by «treatment» of the sorcerer, etc. is shown were missed. Even when performance of znakharsky manipulations does not do direct harm to the patient at present, the disease which is not diagnosed in time and not treated properly by the doctor can progress, cause further complications and to become life-threatening or to turn into suffering with hron, a current; the infectious disease can become hazardous to health and lives of people around. In other cases the sorcerer can cause direct damage to health of the patient and even to cause death (e.g., by production of abortion, pollution of a wound the web, the earth enclosed for a stop of bleeding, purpose of toxic agents, etc.).

Attempts of sorcerers to treat infectious diseases, complications of childbirth, and also those their actions which are a fake under scientific medicine are especially dangerous; quite often sorcerers «apply» together prayers, herbs, pharmaceutical drugs, resort to kustarno to the manufactured tools by means of which they make life-threatening surgical manipulations of the patient.

Prosecution not the only form of fight with 3. It is necessary to open antiscientific character and harm 3., what is a task of bodies of health care and medics. Sometimes patients with frustration of a nervous system or having a heavy illness which address to the sorcerer is the act of despair use services of sorcerers. In some cases defects of the organization of medical aid and medical promotion are behind it. In business izzhitiya 3. crucial importance belongs to actions of the Soviet state paying huge attention to health protection of the people, to upgrading and cultures of medical service, to increase a dignity. cultures of the population. Fight with 3. is more effective if it is combined with atheistic promotion.

See also Meditsina .

Bibliography: L. G. K magnolia vines to a question of charlatanism and sorcery in medicine, Court. - medical examination, t. 3, No. 1, page 37, 1960; The Medical occultism, under the editorship of O. Prokop, the lane with it., M., 1971; H and to l and N A. V. Meditsina against religion and sorcery, L., 1964; I am at - about in S. N. Against complicity to sorcery, in book: Vopr, travmat., sudden death and deontol. in expert practice, page 237, M., 1963; Yakovleva E. A. Sorcery and its medicolegal value, Works Tomsk, medical in-that, t. 7, page 550, 1938.

N. A. Bogoyavlensky, E. N. Danilin; V. V. Zharov (court. medical).