Medicine: Stuttering Fingers

Writer's cramp is an ailment that has puzzled doctors for more than a century, and it continues to baffle them. The victim of writer's cramp is seized by a strange kind of palsy. He may be able to play the piano or balance a teacup, but as soon as he tries to write, his fingers begin to stutter. Some doctors think that the cramp is an occupational disease brought on by too much writing. They prescribe 1) a long rest from writing, or 2) a change of occupation.

All these prescriptions are wrong, a British expert now reports. M. Narasimha Pai,...

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