25 Most Important Medicines Throughout History

Since the earliest human civilizations, medicines have been an important part of staying healthy and treating diseases. From treating a cough to curing Polio, humans have discovered many ways to combat a wide array of illnesses. While we’ve made progress unlike anything in history, we also have a long way to go. Cancer, Alzheimer’s, and many autoimmune diseases are still major problems. But, what has been our major achievements in medicine? Here are 25 Most Important Medicines Throughout History.



ChlorpromazineSource: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2655089/

Synthesized in 1951, Chlorpromazine essentially kick-started the treatment of mental illnesses such as schizophrenia.


Chemotherapy Drugs

chemoSource: https://www.cancer.org

Chemotherapy was first discovered during World War II when a compound called nitrogen mustard was found to work against lymphoma. Since then, researchers have discovered combination chemotherapy, the use of multiple chemotherapy drugs at the same time.



cortisoneSource: http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Cortisone

Cortisone is a naturally occurring steroid hormone. It’s been used to treat a number of ailments including arthritis, allergies, respiratory diseases, and Addison’s disease.



salvarsanSource: https://pubs.acs.org/cen/coverstory/83/8325/8325salvarsan.html

In 1910, syphilis was widespread and incurable until Paul Ehrlich introduced Salvarsan to treat the disease. While it wasn’t a silver bullet and had great controversy around it, its overall success helped show the promise of modern medicine.


Sleeping Pills

sleeping pillSource: https://www.drugs.com/ambien.html

We all know sleep is an important part of staying healthy. People who suffer from insomnia struggle every day to get to sleep. Fortunately, the creation of sleeping pills like Ambien have been helpful in treating the condition.

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