Many of those they did not shoot ended up in hellish hospitals with no way
out.  And many received shock therapy to get over their shell shock.

Date sent:              Sat, 28 Sep 2002 15:11:23 -0500
Send reply to:          "T. S. Eliot Discussion forum." <[log in to unmask]>
From:                   Carrol Cox <[log in to unmask]>
Subject:                Re: Some Queries, was Re: Deluge...
To:                     [log in to unmask]

Nancy Gish wrote:
> Migraine is not much touched by painkillers alone before or after it
> starts. But for many people it is stopped by the prescription medication
> that includes a muscle relaxant.  That is because it is vascular,
> muscular, and chemical.  Having had them for years and once for a period
> of about two years every day, I know a good deal about controlling them.
>  Not everything works for everyone.  Fortunately, mine are mainly
> controlled now.

Yes, there are several treatments now. I've been taking Zanaflex for
three years, and it's pretty much stopped them cold. ADs had stopped
them (mostly) from 1985 to 1999 -- and then I developed what at first
wasn't recognized as migraine (on the top of the head instead of around
the eye), and as they grew steadily worse I was ending up in the ER about
every five days. They would come on at around one or two a.m., and
increase steadily (with the dry heaves) until late afternoon. Had I lived
in a high rise or had a gun in the house I wouldn't be here now.

The older remedies could kill. My father overused cafergot for years; he
died of multi-infarct dementia.

And they still don't know what actually causes migraine (and a thousand
different things can trigger particular migraines), even with their
increased knowledge of how they work. I've come to assume that there is an
interconnection between my repeated bouts of bronchitis in the early-70s,
the development of a continuous migraine in the mid-70s (it had only been
intermittent before) and the serious onslaught of depression in the
mid-'80s (in retrospect occurring intermittently since the late '40s).

The core of it all for present purposes, however, is how little even now
we know about the brain but how much more than anyone knew 80 or even 30
years ago. I can't remember for sure, now, but I think it was only after
the formal identification of PTSD, as Bob says in the '80s, that they
began regularly to connect the shell shock of WW 1 and the combat fatique
of WW 2. And remember the (in)famous case of Patton slapping a young
soldier and accusing him of cowardice. And from the appendix to a crime
novel I read not long ago, I learned that in WW 1 the British shot several
hundred soldiers for cowardice _without_ allowing a defense and without
any record being kept.


P.S. More on _Achilles in Vietnam_: its bookjacket contains one of the
most frightening photographs I have ever seen.