Medicine: Beginning of the End

When 19-year-old Francis Trudeau fell ill in New York with tuberculosis, the disease was still a deadly mystery, romanticized in such plays as La Dame aux Cornelias, but dreaded by its victims and misunderstood by helpless doctors. That was in 1865, and since there were no nurses trained to care for TB victims, Francis Trudeau's 16-year-old younger brother Edward took over the task of sitting with him in a stuffy, tightly sealed room and administering useless cough medicines for four months until Francis died.

Eight years later (by then a doctor with a wife and child), Edward found he had TB himself....

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