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, 42 (8), 1091-3

The Impact of Epilepsy on Graham Greene


The Impact of Epilepsy on Graham Greene

E H Reynolds. Epilepsia.


As a young man, Graham Greene (1904-1991) experienced several episodes of loss of consciousness, which were confidently diagnosed as epilepsy by a Harley Street specialist who saw him on two occasions during the 1920s. The diagnosis was initially concealed from him by his family and the specialist, but when it was revealed, it had a profound effect such that he contemplated suicide. He was particularly concerned about his impending marriage and the risk of having children. His anxiety was not relieved by being told that the famous author, Dostoevsky, had epilepsy. Graham Greene is the only public figure in the United Kingdom, of whom I am aware, who has admitted and discussed the impact of epilepsy, even though this was more than 40 years later when there was some doubt about the diagnosis.

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