Hoffmann, Friedrich (frēˈdrĭkh hôfˈmän) [key], 1660–1742, German physician. He taught and practiced at Halle from 1693. He studied and wrote on such varied topics as pediatrics, mineral waters, and meteorology; introduced many drugs into practice (e.g., Hoffmann's anodyne, or compound spirit of ether); and was among the first to describe several diseases, including appendicitis and German measles, and to recognize the regulatory role of the nervous system. His approach to physiology was mechanistic, viewing disease as a disruption of the body's tonus (hence the term tonic for his remedies).
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Medicine: Biographies