Medicine: Life Force

"This pregnancy is no different from my others," said the Oklahoma housewife mildly. Physicians had indeed found that their 27-year-old patient had just about all the obvious signs of a four-month pregnancy. What flabbergasted them was the knowledge that two years before, she had undergone a hysterectomy, and thus could not possibly have conceived.

Last week the University of Oklahoma Hospitals reported that rarely in medical annals has the poignant phenomenon of false pregnancy—pseudocyesis—survived such odds of matter over mind. Pseudocyesis is older than Hippocrates, has affected subjects from seven to 79....

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