Archaeological finds at Harappa, Mohenjo-Daro, Chanhu-Daro, and other Indus Valley sites have revealed that a vast, highly developed chalcolithic civilization flourished in the lower Indus plains at the dawn of history. Ancient Egypt, and Mesopotamia were all within a few hundred years of the Indus Valley Civilisation. The Indus Valley civilization is most likely the source of ancient Indian medicine. We will discuss medical science in the Indus Valley Civilisation with evidence of trephination and tooth drilling uncovered by archaeologists.
- A Bronze Age Harappan skull has been revealed to have traces of ancient brain surgery with the help of surgical tools, according to researchers at the Anthropological Survey of India.
- In a study published in the newest issue of Current Science, researchers say that an incision in the 4,300-year-old skull shows an “unequivocal case” of Trephination.
- To treat head injuries or remove bone splinters or blood clots resulting from a blow to the head, prehistoric societies performed Trephination surgery, which entailed drilling or cutting through the skull vault.
- Harappan male skull stored in Kolkata’s Anthropological Survey of India Palaeoanthropology Repository contained a Trephination hole, according to the research article.
- Cemetery H, which had red ware but not conventional Harappan ceramics, was where it was found.
- It has been used in religious ceremonies and to “fend off evil spirits” in several parts of the world. Although there is evidence of cranial trauma, the Trephination on the Harappa skull was done to treat it, as shown by a noticeable linear depression, which was presumably caused by a violent blow, according to the study by A.R. Both Sankhyan and G.R Schug.
- In addition, there are signs of healing, “showing that the victim survived for a substantial period of time following the operation,” according to the report cited above. As evidence for prehistoric migrations and the transmission of surgical skills from one society to the next, scholars have found significant similarities in Trephination techniques throughout the continents,” the authors write.
- When researchers found the proto-dentistry skills of the people of Mehrgarh in the early 2000s, they were ecstatic. A scholarly journal published in Nature in April 2006 stated that the earliest evidence for human teeth being drilled in vivo (i.e. in a living individual) had been discovered in Mehrgarh.
- The authors of the study say that their findings support the theory that early farming societies in the region had a legacy of proto-dentistry. Drilled molar crowns from nine adults found in a Neolithic graveyard in Pakistan that dates between 7,500 and 9,000 years ago are described in this paper.” These findings show that early farming cultures have a long legacy of a form of proto-dentistry.
In the Indus Valley Civilisation, people used different herbs and drugs that helped treat diseases and were also conversant with the medical sciences. The process of Trephination was practised by the people of Indus Valley Civilisation that acts as a medical intervention and helps treat migraine and mental disorders by making a hole in the patient’s skull. There’s also evidence that they practised tooth drilling.
The Indus Valley Civilisation is considered to be advanced for its time. They were also skilled at medical science with evidence of proto-dentistry, brain surgery, and usage of herbs for treatment.