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The Sensation Of Absent Limbs

The Sensation Of Absent Limbs image
Parent Issue
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OCR Text

It hus long been known to sutjgearaa that when u limb lms boon cut off the sufferer does not lose tha consciousness of its cxistencc. This has been fouuil tü be truo in neuly evory such caso. Only about fivtí por cent. of tho men who havo guffered amputatioxi never have nny foeling of tho part as being stül present. Of the rest thero aro a few who in lime como to forget the missing member, while the remaintlcr scciu to ïetain a sonso oí its existente so vivid as to be inoro detinito and intrusivo theto is that oï its truly living ii-llow member. A pcrson in this condition is hauntcd, as it wero, by a constant or ineonstant fraotioual phantom of so muoh of himgelf as has been lopped away - un unseen ghost of the lost part, and sometí] protoace made sorely inconvonicnt by tho fact that whilo but faintly feit at times, it is at others acutoly oalled to bis attention by tho paina or irritations which it appeara to sufEsrfrora a blow on the stamp ui ei cbange in the weather. 'l'hcro is something almont tragical, something gbustly, iu tho notion of these thousands of spirit limbs haunting as many good soldiers, and overy now and tlu n tormonting them with tho dis.tppiiitinuiits w'uiiH aiise when, tho memory bc ing off guard for a uiomout, the keen s.:nso of the limb's presenee betntys m;in into some eftbrt, the failure of which of a radden reminds him of his loss. ilany penoal foei Uie lost limb as es.isting tho moment they avrake trom the mcrciful stupor of the ether givon to dej stroy tho tormont of the Unif; others como slowly to this coii icionsnou in days ' and weeks, and when tho wound has hoalod ; but, as a rule, tho mor ) sound anti serriceable tlio stump,ospooially if q artificial Krab bo wom, the moro likeiy is the man to feel faiutly tho presence of lui shorn ïnember. Somotimes a blow on tbo stump will reawakon such cousciouancss, or, ig bappened in one caso, a reamputation higher lip the limb will summon ït anew into geoniirig fexisteaco. With othct3 it ig a prosonce never abentsa-ro i iu sloep. "If.-'says oue man, " I sbould say, I am more suro of the leg wluch ain't than of the one tbat is, I guesa I should bo about correct." Liv■incotl's Magazine,


Old News
Michigan Argus