Medical specimens of yore

Examining bodily fluids to determine ailments is a practice with roots going back to ancient times, as described in an article by Cristina Luiggi in The Scientist magazine.

By the middle ages, charts called urine wheels were used to help diagnose illnesses based on color and other characteristics. While these charts may be the ancestor to modern labwork, many of the conclusions drawn from them do not. Doctors believed a woman's virginity could be determined from a urine sample, and misdiagnoses abound. [photo]