How I Became a Neurologist by David Pratt #shortstory #fiction #amwriting #history #mentalhealth

DÆDALUS Magazine

Set in the summer of 1949, the first woman intern at a southern state hospital faces ethical and professional problems when one of her patients is threatened with lobotomy.

How I Became a Neurologist

by David Pratt

The leucotome in Dr. DeWitt’s right hand looked something like a stainless steel ice pick.  The patient on the table was a 43-year old male schizophrenic, rendered unconscious by three rapid electroshocks.  The doctor lifted the man’s upper right eyelid and inserted the instrument between the eyelid and the eyeball.  The nurse handed him a small hammer with a rubber head and he gave the leucotome a sharp tap.  There was an audible crack! as the point of the instrument broke through the thin upper bone of the eye socket.  The doctor pushed the plunger to obtrude the wire cutting arm, and rotated the leucotome, slicing through brain tissue with a…

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