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A woman (Le Sanying) with tumours on her forehead and under her left ear. Gouache, 18--, after Lam Qua, ca. 1838.

  • Lam, Qua.
Date
[1838?]
Reference
643385i
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  • Online

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view A woman (Le Sanying) with tumours on her forehead and under her left ear. Gouache, 18--, after Lam Qua, ca. 1838.

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Credit: A woman (Le Sanying) with tumours on her forehead and under her left ear. Gouache, 18--, after Lam Qua, ca. 1838. Wellcome Collection. Public Domain Mark

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About this work

Description

"Case of malpractice. June 1838. Le Sanying, aged 27, of Hwa heen, one year previous to her coming to the hospital had a tumor the size of a hen's egg, upon the forehead. The Chinese as usual applied escharotics [a corrosive substance applied to living tissue in order to produce a slough or scab], by which it was converted into an ulcer of a bad character. A more pitiable object seldom presents itself, than was this woman at her first visit. The ulcerated tumor spread over a surface of three or four square inches. Another tumor had also attained the size of a small orange under the left ear, and a third had commenced over the temporal artery of the right side near its origin. The pulse was feeble, the countenance sallow, and without speedy relief the patient must have died. The ulcer on the head was first cleansed by poultices [preparations of hot moist material], and afterwards adhesive straps and firm bandages were applied--tonics administered, and the whole assumed a healthy appearance. The tumor under the ear has been removed, and new skin has covered a considerable portion of the sore forehead. Had the tumor been left to itself by the native physician it might have been easily removed, and the young woman saved a great deal of suffering. Her case is still doubtful."--Peter Parker's report, Rachman, loc. cit.

Publication/Creation

[1838?]

Physical description

1 painting : gouache ; sheet 52 x 36 cm

Contributors

References note

Stephen D. Rachman, The mysteries of Lam Qua: medical portraiture in China 1836-1855, website, http://www.historicalvoices.org/lamqua/index.php (accessed 30 July 2004), case no. 4849, dated 1838
Peter Parker Collection, Medical Historical Library, Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library, Yale University, website http://www.med.yale.edu/library/historical/parker (accessed 20 December 2004), no. 20
Sander L. Gilman, 'Lam Qua and the development of a westernized medical iconography in China', Medical history, 1986, 30: 57-69; Larissa N. Heinrich, The afterlife of images: translating the pathological body between China and the West, Durham: Duke University Press, 2008

Lettering note

Bears number on verso: No. 26

Reference

Wellcome Library no. 643385i

Reproduction note

After: one of at least 115 paintings executed in Canton (Guangzhou) by Lam Qua, ca. 1830-1850, for the American missionary Peter Parker (1804-1888), and which are now (2004) in the Peter Parker Collection, Medical Historical Library, Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library, Yale University, New Haven; the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art (Cornell University); and the Gordon Museum, Guy's Hospital, London: see cited works by Gilman, Rachman and Heinrich. Paintings in the Yale library (Peter Parker Collection, op. cit.) and the Gordon Museum (described as "Squamous carcinoma of forehead with possible metastases") show the same subject


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