history of epilepsy

Under D&D rules, a dagger does 1d4 base damage. The average human has a Strength score of 10, adding no bonuses. Several of them, due to the military background of many, likely had strength or dexterity scores of 11-14. But only two or three, and quite a few would be frail with old age, sinking to 8-9 strength. All in all, we can only add a total of +1 damage per round from Brutus.

An estimate of sixty men were involved in Caesar’s actual murder. Not the wider conspiracy, but the stabbing.

Julius Caesar was a general, which is generally depicted as a 10th level fighter. Considering his above baseline constitution and dex, weakened by his probable history of malaria, epilepsy, and/or strokes (-1 dex modifier), and lack of armor at the time of the event, he would likely have something along the lines of AC 9 and 60 HP. The senators would likely hit him roughly 55% the time.

So the Roman senate had a damage-per-round of 66, more than enough to kill Caesar in one round even without factoring in surprise round advantage.


books read in 2017: the gentlemans guide to vice and virtue 

Two friends on their Grand Tour of 18th-century Europe who stumble upon a magical artifact that leads them from Paris to Venice in a dangerous manhunt, fighting pirates, highwaymen, and their feelings for each other along the way.

Our expert on slavery in the United States and the Caribbean, /u/sowser, writes on the history of epilepsy in slave communities in the United States.

Five generations on Smith’s Plantation, Beaufort, South Carolina,” 1862, photograph by Timothy H. O'Sullivan.


So. Marble Hornets Haunted House AUs. 

Historically, I tend to inflict Haunted House AUs on every fandom I find myself in. (And I’m not talking literal haunted houses here; I’m talking about those places that pop up around Halloween or year-round, where you walk through spooky sets and actors jump out at you. Sometimes there are free-roaming actors in scarezone-type things.) I just…love haunted houses/haunts. Very much. And therefore it becomes fun to think about how a cast of known characters might behave in one of them.

Harbly Marblies, however, is a little tougher, because here we’ve got a cast of characters who are living in a modern-day world where haunts would exist…but who are also deeply traumatized by supernatural spookythings, probably to the point where there is no chance in hell you’d ever get them through the front doors of a haunt. 

So we’ve got some options here. Here are a couple of them.

(Cut because holy cow this post got longer than I expected.

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10 important Emergency/First Aid tips you may not know

Chances are, you may never encounter a serious emergency. But on the off-chance you do, knowing basic principles could save you, or someone else. It may be a little cringe-worthy, but it’s important stuff to know. (Also, kind of cool for you fiction writers out there, so you know the sorts of stuff that would really go down and how your characters should/should not respond.)

1) If something is stuck in, DO NOT PULL IT OUT. Pencil in the eye? Knife in the chest? Piece of glass in hand? With the exception of splinters in the top layer of skin, NEVER EVER EVER pull something out! It will cause the person to lose blood, or cause serious nerve damage, or other irreparable harm. Stabilize the object and wait for the ambulance. Or, if you’re too far from EMS, stabilize the object, pop the person in your car, and drive like the wind (with flashers on, of course).

2) If something is sticking out, DO NOT SHOVE IT BACK IN. Guts/intestines, eyeball, bone, you name it; if a body part is out of place, NEVER EVER EVER put it back in place. You WILL pinch nerves, trap debris, cause infection, cut off blood supply, send the person into shock, or some other horrid consequence. Putting stuff back in is a job for the pros. Stabilize whatever you can, and cover it all with a damp, sterile dressing (sterile cloth bandage with bottled/purified water will do the trick) and wait for EMS. Or, if you’re hours from help, follow the above directions and drive, baby drive! (Note: if there are guts hanging out of a person’s abdomen, and you absolutely have to drive them–ie, EMS can’t get there, you’re up the side of a mountain, etc– you need someone holding the person still at all times, in a near-fetal position.)

3) If someone is seizing out/convulsing, you do NOT try to hold them down/still. Don’t touch them at all. Just move things out of the way so they aren’t in danger of hitting anything, and put a pillow/cushion under their head. A jacket rolled up works just fine. If they are standing and start to go down in a Grand Mal seizure, you can catch them to keep them from injuring themselves in a fall, but DO NOT pin them down, grab their tongue, hold their head, etc. Just let them go. If it goes longer than 5 minutes OR the person has no previous history of epilepsy, then call 911. Stay with them til they regain consciousness.

4) That old wives’ tale to put butter on a burn? DON’T DO IT. You’ll cook your skin and give yourself an infection. Use cool water. If it blisters, you probably need a medical cream. Also, DO NOT POP THE BURN BLISTERS!!!! That’s your body’s protection from infection. You pop that, and it’s a big welcome party for all kinds of horrid bacteria. Don’t pop it, don’t butter it. Cool water and burn cream.

5) Tourniquets are only to be used in situations where you can’t get to medical help within several days. DO. NOT. TOURNIQUET. SOMEONE’S. LIMB. EVER!!!! Blood vessels that have been severed automatically shrink away from the injury, so all you need to do is apply a sterile dressing to the bloody stump or gaping wound, pile on absorbent materials and, however much it’s going to hurt, PUSH. Pressure will help clotting and stop blood from gushing out. Push as hard as you can if it’s a big artery or vein. (Though, if someone has severed an artery, chances are slim to begin with.) Tourniquets cause lasting damage and make it impossible for reattachment of severed body parts, and can result in further amputations being necessary. Plus, they don’t even always work. TOURNIQUETS ARE THE DEVIL DON’T DO IT!

6) If someone swallowed a toxic substance (pills, chemicals, plants, poisons), DO NOT make them vomit! You could cause more damage to their internal organs, esophagus, or even cause them to aspirate. If YOU accidentally swallow something toxic, don’t make yourself vomit either. Call poison control instantly, and they’ll give you individual, case-by-case instructions on what to do. Poison control hotline is 1800-222-1222. I remember it as “800, triple 2,1,triple 2.”

7) Alcohol and hydrogen peroxide are terrible for cleaning wounds. They kill everything, not just germs, so they’re killing your body’s cells, too. A wound cleaned with alcohol/hydrogen peroxide will take almost twice as long to heal as one cleaned with just a soap and water wash. The proper way to clean a minor injury is by running clean water over it, then washing with mild soap and water. Then slap on some antibiotic and a dressing if it’s still bleeding, and if not, leave it exposed to the air to heal. If it’s too bad/deep to be cleaned with just water and soap, it needs professional medical attention.

 8) If you find someone lying on the ground, DO NOT MOVE THEM. They could have fallen and may have a spinal injury. Check to see if they’re breathing. If not, you can roll them over to begin CPR (no need to check pulse– if they’re not breathing, start CPR right away; this is the current ARC guideline). That’s it. Don’t move them from where they were found, especially if it’s a high-risk situation, like a car accident, skiing accident, fall from a great height, etc. Look around, take a minute to be Sherlock Holmes, and look at what may have caused them to end up like this. If there’s even a possibility of spinal injury, don’t touch them except to perform CPR/AED when necessary!

9) If the scene is still a dangerous situation, don’t be a hero. You won’t be helping anyone by getting electrocuted by that live wire, or hit by still oncoming traffic. You’re only going to make more victims for EMS and rescue workers to save. It’s not being cowardly; it’s not immoral. You can’t help someone if you get yourself killed or injured in the process. Survey the scene, and if it’s noticeably dangerous, stay back. Call 911, obviously, and stay nearby to continue reporting to them, but don’t be a martyr.

10) Above all, if you start getting sick or dizzy while helping someone, step back. Take a minute. It’s not going to help them if you barf on them or pass out. Compose yourself, then come back. There’s no shame in not being able to handle emergency situations. It’s hard, it’s gross, and it can mess you up. Take care of you, then take care of others. And if, after assisting at/being part of an emergency, you have a hard time dealing with the memories or emotions, seek help. It’s extremely common to have PTSD after helping at an emergency scene. There is nothing wrong with that; get the help you need.

Stay safe, everybody!

Epilepsy was one of the first brain disorders to be described. It was mentioned in ancient Babylon more than 3,000 years ago… The term epilepsy is derived from the Greek word epilam-banein, meaning to attack or seize. People once thought that epileptic individuals were being visited by demons or gods. However, in 400 b.c., the early physician Hippocrates suggested that epilepsy was a disorder of the brain …
—  From a review by Goldenberg