Medicine: Spit It Out, Soldier

It used to be called "shell shock." Doctors now call it "traumatic war neurosis." The term "shell-shock" has been loosely used for symptoms ranging all the way from temporary nervousness and hysteria (e.g., a soldier thinks his arm is paralyzed but moves it when the doctor proves the reflexes are in working order) to permanent insanity. So far, about 5% of all World War II battle casualties and about 20% of the casualties returned to the U.S. have been nervous cases.

From the U.S. medical service in North Africa last week came word that a...

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