Lincoln and Medicine

Lincoln MedicineLincoln and Medicine
Glenna R. Schroeder-Lein
Hardcover; 152 pages
Southern Illinois University Press (2012)

A book from the Concise Lincoln Library series, Lincoln and Medicine is a brief analysis of the medical conditions possibly suffered by Abraham Lincoln and his family. Schroeder-Lein does a thorough and effective job examining the available information supporting or refuting diagnoses such as Marfan’s Syndrome and depression, among others. The author also discusses Mary Todd Lincoln’s sanity and causes of death for the Lincoln children. A pleasing read for those interested in medical history or the life of our sixteenth president.

1 Comment

  1. A Review:
    The life of America’s sixteenth president has continued to fascinate the public since his tragic death. Now, Glenna R. Schroeder-Lein unveils an engaging volume on the medical history of the Lincoln family. Lincoln and Medicine, the first work on the subject in nearly eighty years, investigates the most enduring controversies about Lincoln’s mental health, physical history, and assassination; the conditions that afflicted his wife and children, both before and after his death; and Lincoln’s relationship with the medical field during the Civil War, both as commander-in-chief and on a personal level.
    Since his assassination in 1865, Lincoln has been diagnosed with no less than seventeen conditions by doctors, historians, and researchers, including congestive heart failure, epilepsy, Marfan syndrome, and mercury poisoning. Glenna Schroeder-Lein offers objective scrutiny of the numerous speculations and medical mysteries that continue to be associated with the president’s physical and mental health, from the recent interest in testing Lincoln’s DNA and theories that he was homosexual, to analysis of the deep depressions, accidents, and illnesses that plagued his early years. Set within the broader context of the prevailing medical knowledge and remedies of the era, Lincoln and Medicine takes into account new perspectives on the medical history of Abraham Lincoln and his family, offering an absorbing and informative view into a much-mythologized, yet under investigated, dimension of one of the nation’s most famous leaders.
    Author of The Encyclopedia of Civil War Medicine and Confederate Hospitals on the Move: Samuel H. Stout and the Army of Tennessee, Ms Schroeder-Lein has scored another ace. This volume is a must for any Lincolnite and those interested in nineteenth-century medicine.
    This volume is highly recommended

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