Diagnosing Vincent van Gogh

If only he's not melancholy and heading for another crisis, Theo to his wife 20 July 1890.....In his letters Vincent van Gogh complained time and again - from his early years to just before his tragic death - of 'melancholy' then a medical term for serious depression alternated by high mood. Vincent discussed this illness with other fellow sufferers, including his close family. His last Docter, Gachet, had written a thesis on melancholy, and was according to the artist, , a fellow sufferer.
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After the ear incident however van Gogh received the daignosis of 'masked epilepsy' then a popular diagnosis for creative persons who showed hardly a sign of traditional epiplesy. It was a degenerative doom scenario entailing the debilitation, not only of the patient but also of his family, getting worse in following generations. What the impact was of this diagnosis, which was not evidence based, on van Gogh is shown in: THE CULTURAL CONTEXT OF DIAGNOSIS, THE CASE OF VINCENT VAN GOGH,