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Just as the catastrophe, shipwreck, looks somewhat different riding in a lifeboat than floundering in the sea, so also the catastrophe, stroke, looks somewhat different observing someone else than suffering oneself. The tiny vascular lesion, the irreversible destruction of brain tissue, and the lack of specific therapy for stroke lie so prominently in the foreground of the physician's perspective that he may see less vividly the socioeconomic adjustment and need to make the best of a bad situation so essential for the patient. The fate of a patient after a stroke depends in a large measure upon whether the outlook is pessimistic, justified by the function that has been lost, or optimistic, justified by the function that is retained or can be developed.
The author, a refugee of the Russian Revolution of 1917, became a successful businessman in the United States before he had his first stroke at the age
Wehrmacher WH. Comeback: The Story of My Stroke. Arch Intern Med. 1963;112(4):623–624. doi:10.1001/archinte.1963.03860040219028
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