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History Jun 21, 2019

The beginnings of Psychiatry in HU


In ancient times there was a mystical idea about mental illnesses, it was until the 19th century, when knowledge of the central nervous system was developed and parallel to it, the evaluation and treatment of the same conditions.

The Old González Hospital had spaces to attend to the mentally ill, as mentioned by Dr. Juan de Dios Treviño, director of the same: “… we have 8 cells with iron doors to guard the mad madmen, which helps a lot in the study of mental illnesses ”(Report, 1886). Referring not only to medical attention, but to scrutinizing these diseases.  

By 1904, as Dr. Luis Cavazos Guzmán refers, “Dr. González Flores himself informed the Governor on July 31, 1904, that of the 125 hospitalized patients [at the González Hospital], a third were mentally ill. (Social security in Nuevo León, 1999).

At the national level, the first psychiatric hospital in Mexico was “La Castañeda”, opened in 1910, it was the academic reference, since doctors from different parts of the country, were doing their studies there, as was the case of Dr. Simón Riojas: “In February, Dr. Simón Riojas was provided with the amount of $ 100 in cash and a license was granted for two months in the chairs that he is in charge of in order to allow him to study psychiatry at the asylum in Mixcoac, DF” (Reports , 1939).

In the 1940 Curriculum, of the Nuevo León School of Medicine, the Clinical Psychiatry course, taught by Dr. Gabriel Capó Balle, was directed to students in the 5th year: “The course of psychiatry will be a pass for students who have less than 15 absences and for the next school year the teacher of the subject must formulate the curriculum that will be considered by the board of directors before starting it ”. (Reports, 1940).

In 1967 the Psychiatry Unit was inaugurated, in an independent building behind the University Hospital, constituting the Department of Psychiatry, that same year the program for the Residence in General Psychiatry was opened, the first chief was Dr. Hernán Solís Garza. Subsequently, the facilities were expanded in 1981.

In 1973 the chairs in Group, Couple and Family Psychotherapy were established, as well as that of Psychosomatic Medicine, by Dr. Ricardo Salinas Ruiz, graduated from the Nuevo León School of Medicine in 1951, who entered the plant of Professors in 1952. In 1968, he completed the specialty in Psychiatry, was appointed Head of the Department in 1983, remaining in office for 10 years. In 2017, he was annoyed by the UANL for his 65 years of teaching work, being the professor with more years in the entire University. He passed away on March 26, at the age of 91.