International Leprosy Association -
History of Leprosy

International Leprosy Association -
History of Leprosy

Oshima (Japan)

Oshima, aerial view

Oshima, aerial view

When Dr Herbert Windsor Wade visited Japan, he returned with photographs of Oshima. Isaac Santra also visited Oshima. He noted that since 1909, 600 people had died there and their body parts had been preserved for pathological purposes. He was told that M. leprae had been found in the foetuses of unborn children (28). Sterilisation by vasectomy was used there.

Santra also described two miles of roads constructed by the Young Men’s Association. These roads crossed the hills, and small bells with flags were attached to the trees by the side of the road. The bells tinkled to warn those whose sight had been impaired, and were called “the blind man’s friend”. Santra also remarked that one of the residents had produced a journal for ten years, written several books, and composed poetry.

 

Entry to Oshima

Entry to Oshima

 

Staff at Oshima, with Dr Wade

Staff at Oshima, with Dr Wade