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March 1988

Ivan: Living With Parkinson's Disease

Author Affiliations

Somerset, NJ

Arch Neurol. 1988;45(3):239. doi:10.1001/archneur.1988.00520270009002

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


This pocket-sized paperback is a highly personal account of what it is like to live with Parkinson's disease (PD) in the 1980s. It appears to have generated considerable controversy and suspicion among some neurologists, and this is not difficult to understand. Ivan Vaughan is a brilliant nonphysician scientist/author who was able to browbeat his physicians into therapeutic trials that might be labeled substance abuse and quackery. The concept of the malpractogenic patient, not previously described to the best of my knowledge, is herein discovered.

Notwithstanding, Ivan is quite clearly an important contribution, because of its countless intuitive and creative observations of the effects of PD and its treatment (levodopa) on movement, thought, dreaming, creativity, mood, and religious experience. Much of the material represented fresh information and insight for me. The marvelous chapter, "On the Loo," reminds the neurologist of the limitations of the office examination table in understanding the permeating

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