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Revista médica de Chile

versión impresa ISSN 0034-9887

Resumen

YOUNG, Pablo et al. Rod of Asclepius. Symbol of Medicine. Rev. méd. Chile [online]. 2013, vol.141, n.9, pp.1197-1201. ISSN 0034-9887.  http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0034-98872013000900013.

Symbolism is one of the most archaic forms of human thoughts. Symbol derives from the Latin word symbolum, and the latter from the Greek symbolon or symballo, which means “I coincide, I make matches”. The Medicine symbol represents a whole series of historical and ethical values. Asclepius Rod with one serpent entwined, has traditionally been the symbol of scientific medicine. In a misconception that has lasted 500 years, the Caduceus of Hermes, entwined by two serpents and with two wings, has been considered the symbol of Medicine. However, the Caduceus is the current symbol of Commerce. Asclepius Rod and the Caduceus of Hermes represent two professions, Medicine and Commerce that, in ethical practice, should not be mixed. Physicians should be aware of their real emblem, its historical origin and meaning.

Palabras clave : Emblems and insignia; History of Medicine; Symbolism.

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