A hundred years ago: Neurasthenia in war. Practitioner 2016;260 (1793):10

Neurasthenia in war

23 May 2016Registered users

As soon as the acute stage has passed off, usually in a week or two, it is inadvisable to prolong the Weir-Mitchell treatment. The course usually prescribed is six weeks, but this is, in very many cases, harmful. The ennui and monotony are prejudicial, and will engender a feeling of helplessness, feebleness, and dependence upon others. I believe the majority would be far better to begin in a fortnight or three weeks to interest themselves in some pursuit or hobby. It is an interest in life that these people need. This will prevent them from drifting into the chronic stage from which it is so difficult to remove them. In neurasthenia, it is the person rather than the disease that demands treatment.

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