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Thread: Healing techniques

  1. #1
    Sixth Year Hufflepuff
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    Healing techniques

    Hello, all!

    In my latest fic I have a character suffering from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) and I was wondering-- how would the Healers diagnose the disease? In the Muggle world, doctors carry out several investigations-- there is a blood picture, bone marrow examination, urine examination, lumbar puncture, X-Rays, etc. Only after these tests are confirmed can the disease be diagnosed.

    Most of these tests involve needles and though I do see modern-day Healers using needles sometimes (as alternative routes of treatment and stuff), I don't know if they'd do a whole collection of investigations using needles (or would they in fact accept Muggle medicine enough to do just that?). And though there are some general symptoms related to ALL, those don't indicate definitive diagnosis. To add to it all, leukaemia definitely needs at least a blood and bone marrow picture for the diagnosis (because it has a few types and the person must be treated for the right type).

    And even apart from leukaemia there are certain diseases (some infections) which require blood testing and stuff and I don't see how Healers could diagnose the patient without a blood sample.

    Any thoughts on how the Healers would carry out the diagnosis? Would they use needles after all?

    What about treatment? Does anyone see Healers evolving from Potion-drinking and wand-waving to actually finding faster ways to introduce the medicine into the patient's system? The patients can't always drink potions-- there are a number of complications they could have from diseases (or even mere unconsciousness) which would prevent them from being able to drink the potion and it doesn't look wise on the Healers' part to wait for the patient to be able to ingest stuff before starting treatment.

    And my last question: Since Healers don't believe in needles, injectable vaccines for the kids are out of question. Any ideas on how Wizarding kids would be immunised?

    I know. I'm obsessed with medical stuff, >.<

    Thank you!
    ~ Pooja

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  2. #2
    Ebil Minion Ravenclaw
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    I researched ALL. Since it mainly affects kids who are 2-5 years old, could you have the Healer wave a wand over them and make some sort of x-ray? And I suppose that they could use IVs if you have a really forward-thinking Healer. This is rather interesting. You could have a spell where you put the tip of the wand to the skin and it kind of being like a shot. That could work for treating them too.
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    Though I've got no idea about medical stuff, I've found that going to the spells already used in Potterverse (the list on Wikia is pretty comprehensive) sometimes gives me ideas about things I can manipulate to serve my needs. Don't forget all the different things charms can do too, so you can create a charm to do pretty much anything.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lost_Robin
    I researched ALL. Since it mainly affects kids who are 2-5 years old, could you have the Healer wave a wand over them and make some sort of x-ray? And I suppose that they could use IVs if you have a really forward-thinking Healer. This is rather interesting. You could have a spell where you put the tip of the wand to the skin and it kind of being like a shot. That could work for treating them too.
    You researched well, haha. The character who suffers with this is two years old in my fic.

    I'm having the Healers use IV like, later on in the fic when oral potions are not very well accepted. But I like your idea for the shot. Ha, I guess wizarding kids will never be afraid of Healers then! That's an interesting idea, yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by noblefate
    Though I've got no idea about medical stuff, I've found that going to the spells already used in Potterverse (the list on Wikia is pretty comprehensive) sometimes gives me ideas about things I can manipulate to serve my needs. Don't forget all the different things charms can do too, so you can create a charm to do pretty much anything.
    I generally write wand-waving and Potions for most medical stuff but I just realised that maybe drawing blood and CSF would require a different technique... I don't know...
    ~ Pooja

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  5. #5
    Ebil Minion Ravenclaw
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    If it's a Next-Gen kid, you could have the pro-Muggle trainee Healer from OOTP (I forgot his name) be the kid's Healer and he would probably use Muggle techniques. I've never actually thought this much about Healers...

    How are you going to have them heal said kid?
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  6. #6
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    I always figured that blood testing would be a (relatively) common thing in the Wizarding world for diagnoses. I mean, aren't children of werewolves in danger of being born as one? Maybe it's just an irrational fear Lupin had that I'm attributing to that, but I figured the easiest/most humane way to check would be blood testing. Needles or no, blood testing at least seems like something that any competent Healer would be able to do. As to how - well, isn't there a spell that expels organs? Someone's bound to have developed a blood-letting spell then, and that could be applied to give very light loss of blood for testing. Whether the spell's origins are Dark or not could be interesting and a little bit of fleshing out of the world.

    Either way, wizards might act above Muggle practices but I feel like a Healer - or at least a Healer dealing with something as heavy as ALL - would at least attempt to get the parents of the patient to think about the treatment. The treatments themselves would probably be potions until they aren't working well with the patient, then wand-work and the usual spells, and maybe the last resort would be either Muggle doctor techniques or even more experimental techniques. That's generally how treatments are dealt with right? First the tried and true and then slowly try and introduce the 'new' techniques to the patient?

    You could lean into the more naturalistic side of magic and maybe introduce a Healer who has studied stuff like ritualistic healing or... well, I dunno. Maybe I'm throwing out too much speculative stuff, but that's all I've got

    Oh and immunization is tricky. The introduction of the disease/germ could be done a ton of ways - maybe isolation with the germ and careful attention. It's a bit hard without vaccinations but I think you could work out something with that or even Herbology.

  7. #7
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    I think you're overlooking magical objects as Healer tools. Maybe a stethoscope with way more functions than a Muggle one, or maybe a something like an MRI machine, but with magic? There are a lot of magical objects that are just modified Muggle objects (Dumbledore's lighter, Molly's clock, etc.) As for immunizations, I think spells and potions would make sense.

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  8. #8
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    Good Lord, I forgot about this thread. Sorry, if anyone thought I was a nastily ungrateful person. >.< I'm not. Thank you very, very much for all the help! And I really loved the ideas out there!

    Quote Originally Posted by Lost_Robin
    How are you going to have them heal said kid?
    Ah, it is a next-gen kid but I think there will be a lot more Healers than Augustus Pye (the OotP trainee) who would use a few Muggle techniques. Anyway, I'm going to stick to as much magic as possible, as Muggle Healing will be later on.

    Treatment-- The kid is Hugo, btw. Anyway ALL requires Chemo. Well, it does have a complicated version which requires radiation but as the story is less about ALL and more about Ron and Hermione's marriage I'm not going to complicate it for poor Hugo.

    In Muggle chemo, the patient gets intravenous medicines in sessions for an unfixed amount of time-- depending on how fast the cancer can be controlled, really. For Hugo's type of ALL, the articles I've read say it takes 6-8 months of continuous therapy to achieve remission. Then it takes another three years (for boys) for interim maintenance.

    I am guessing that if the wizards knew a faster and better method than the Muggles, they would have found a way of introducing it into the Muggle world. But as of now in 2012 (when this story is set) it's still 8 months + 3 years. So, I think the Wizarding world will have potions that have similar action to the Muggle ones, except, possible, less side-effects. And then when oral leads to rejection from Hugo, the potions will be given IV.

    Quote Originally Posted by opti
    I always figured that blood testing would be a (relatively) common thing in the Wizarding world for diagnoses. I mean, aren't children of werewolves in danger of being born as one? Maybe it's just an irrational fear Lupin had that I'm attributing to that, but I figured the easiest/most humane way to check would be blood testing. Needles or no, blood testing at least seems like something that any competent Healer would be able to do. As to how - well, isn't there a spell that expels organs? Someone's bound to have developed a blood-letting spell then, and that could be applied to give very light loss of blood for testing. Whether the spell's origins are Dark or not could be interesting and a little bit of fleshing out of the world.
    This helped me a lot! Thank you!

    I like the idea of a blood-letting spell because, yes, that would be considered Dark Magic by some and could lead to some new plot strands in my own story. Thank you! Yes, I thought that there should be techniques for blood testing in the Wizarding World because even for paternity tests, some hormone conditions, etc this is required and I can see Healers try to use them.

    Either way, wizards might act above Muggle practices but I feel like a Healer - or at least a Healer dealing with something as heavy as ALL - would at least attempt to get the parents of the patient to think about the treatment. The treatments themselves would probably be potions until they aren't working well with the patient, then wand-work and the usual spells, and maybe the last resort would be either Muggle doctor techniques or even more experimental techniques. That's generally how treatments are dealt with right? First the tried and true and then slowly try and introduce the 'new' techniques to the patient?

    You could lean into the more naturalistic side of magic and maybe introduce a Healer who has studied stuff like ritualistic healing or... well, I dunno. Maybe I'm throwing out too much speculative stuff, but that's all I've got

    Oh and immunization is tricky. The introduction of the disease/germ could be done a ton of ways - maybe isolation with the germ and careful attention. It's a bit hard without vaccinations but I think you could work out something with that or even Herbology.
    Yes, I thought so too. Maybe Healers would begin with routine and then switch to the more obscure treatments when that didn't work. And immunisation sounds good with Herbology! I can see than happening. Maybe shoot something into the blood with the wand or something. Non-painful, kids would giggle when they got shots. Thank you, thank you very much!

    Quote Originally Posted by expelliarmus17
    I think you're overlooking magical objects as Healer tools. Maybe a stethoscope with way more functions than a Muggle one, or maybe a something like an MRI machine, but with magic? There are a lot of magical objects that are just modified Muggle objects (Dumbledore's lighter, Molly's clock, etc.) As for immunizations, I think spells and potions would make sense.
    Yes, and now I think I'll think of some Magical tools! Hmm. Thank you for the suggestion, really, you're right-- this slipped my mind!

    Thank you, everyone! My bad that I didn't reply sooner!
    ~ Pooja

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  9. #9
    shaun056
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    Interesting, however I would have thought that, given the name of St Mungos, (St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries) that they would only deal with magical ailments, I am sure they would be able to help them out but perhaps they would go to a muggle hospital for that? I imagine it would be pretty easy for most wizards to get into a muggle hospital and get themselves treated. Just an alternative.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaun056
    Interesting, however I would have thought that, given the name of St Mungos, (St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries) that they would only deal with magical ailments, I am sure they would be able to help them out but perhaps they would go to a muggle hospital for that? I imagine it would be pretty easy for most wizards to get into a muggle hospital and get themselves treated. Just an alternative.
    Cancer is largely unavoidable by all humankind, magical or not (judging by the aetiology) and since cancer could be fatal I doubt St Mungo's wouldn't know how to treat patients for cancer. However, it could be that the wizards have another hospital exclusively for cancer, yes. Anyway, to leave things simple, I'm just going to go ahead and get him treated at St Mungo's. You idea, however WAS interesting and thank you very much!
    ~ Pooja

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