By Oliver Sacks
The writer of twelve books, together with the bestselling Awakenings, the guy Who Mistook His spouse For a Hat, Musicophilia, and Hallucinations, Oliver Sacks is the world over popular for his compassionate method of sufferers stricken by profound neurological problems. but while an twist of fate on an uninhabited mountain in Norway leaves Dr. Sacks with a critical leg harm, he turns into the sufferer. in the course of what must have been a regimen restoration interval, he studies an overpowering sensation that his injured leg is now absent from his physique, and certainly from his actual knowledge. In A Leg to face On, one in all Dr. Sacks’ such a lot own works, this traumatic adventure is the place to begin of a desirable trip in the course of the mysteries of conception, the actual substance of our identities, and the adventure of being a patient.
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Extra info for A Leg to Stand On
Miss Preston," I said, glancing at her name-tag (I had only thought of her as "the physiotherapist" up to this point). "I think you are talking very good sense indeed and I wish more doctors thought as you do. " 'Tm sorry," she said. "I got carried away.... Let's have another go. It's all plain sailing once the muscle gets going. One little contraction-that's all you need-it's the first little twitch, and then you go from there. I'll tell you what-" here her voice became sympathetic and friendly-"!
I said in my dream. "There's something the matter-quite dreadfully the matter. The muscle's been deneroated, somehow or other. " I strained and strained, but it was no use at all. The leg lay motionless, and inert, as if dead. I woke from this dream, sweating, in terror, actually trying to tense the flaccid muscle (as, perhaps, I had been doing in my dream). But it was useless, it didn't work-as in the dream. I said to myself: "It's the champagne. You're 36 Becoming a Patient delirious, you're excited.
I tried with the right leg. No difficulty at all. " No effort of willing or thinking was needed. The leg did everything naturally and easily. I also tried-it was Miss Preston's last suggestion-"facilitation" she called it-to raise both legs simultaneously, in the hope that there might be some overflow or transfer from the good side. But, alas, not a trace! No "facilitation" whatever! After forty minutes, then, which left both Miss Preston and me exhausted and frustrated, we desisted, and let the quad be.
A Leg to Stand On by Oliver Sacks