Neurosurgery: The Road Back

After a hard day on the set playing the part of a missionary doctor in Director John Ford's Seven Women, Patricia Neal, 39, went home to Pacific Palisades. She was helping her daughter Tessa, almost 8, with her bath when she collapsed with a blinding, disabling pain in her head. Her husband, British Short Story Writer Roald Dahl, knew that this was no ordinary headache. Ever since a 1960 Manhattan taxicab accident left their only son* Theo, 41, with hydrocephalus (water on the brain), Dahl had been working with neurosurgeons on an improved valve to drain water from the...

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