Sick and wounded soldiers in this war are in many ways more fortunate than those in the last war. They are being treated with benefit of advances in chemotherapy and in medical and surgical procedures; they are being transported with a minimum of trauma, and rapidly, to hospitals and units where they receive definitive treatment. Moreover, they find in their medical officer a physician who has a broader understanding of the psychologic aspects of disease.
The duration and course of convalescence are deeply influenced by the psychologic reactions of the patient. Their importance cannot be overemphasized. The recognition and management of personality disturbances plays as great a part in treatment as does the use of specific medical and surgical procedures. Employment of adequate measures for combating resentments, dissatisfactions, anxieties and fears will minimize symptoms during convalescence, shorten its duration and increase the proportion of completely rehabilitated patients.
I. THE PROBLEM