The Lost Genius of Roald Dahl

From Vsauce2.

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Everyone knows Roald Dahl’s stories, and several generations have grown up on Willy Wonka, Matilda, and more. But lurking behind the Oompa Loompas and the giant peaches is the life of a scientist, an inventor, and a medical pioneer so important that his work has saved thousands of lives worldwide — and Dahl did his best to make sure you didn’t know it.

The bizarre life of Roald Dahl is a true story full of twists, turns, and tragedies. He survived his own traumatic brain injury in a World War II plane crash, and it might have done him a bit of good as a creator. But years later when his infant son was hit by a taxi, Roald harnessed his surprisingly deep medical and scientific knowledge to help create a cerebral valve that would benefit generations of children… all while keeping his own involvement quiet.

His most significant contribution to medicine may have come after that when his wife Patricia Neal suffered a series of strokes. Roald Dahl wasn’t a neurology expert, and he had no special expertise in brain injury or stroke recovery. What he did have was a creative mind, and the regimen he invented to rehabilitate Pat’s brain and body became the standard for our treatment of strokes.

Was Roald Dahl a fantastic artist, or was he a talented scientist? The answer is… yes. And that begs the question: is there even a difference?

#roalddahl #neuroscience #neurology