Icon WebMD Expert Blogs

This blog has been retired.


The opinions expressed in WebMD User-generated content areas like communities, review, ratings, or blogs are solely those of the User, who may or may not have... Expand

The opinions expressed in WebMD User-generated content areas like communities, reviews, ratings, or blogs are solely those of the User, who may or may not have medical or scientific training. These opinions do not represent the opinions of WebMD. User-generated content areas are not reviewed by a WebMD physician or any member of the WebMD editorial staff for accuracy, balance, objectivity, or any other reason except for compliance with our Terms and Conditions. Some of these opinions may contain information about treatments or uses of drug products that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. WebMD does not endorse any specific product, service or treatment.

Do not consider WebMD User-generated content as medical advice. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider because of something you have read on WebMD. You should always speak with your doctor before you start, stop, or change any prescribed part of your care plan or treatment. WebMD understands that reading individual, real-life experiences can be a helpful resource, but it is never a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified health care provider. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or dial 911 immediately.


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Downton Abbey: Shell Shock and Broken Hearts

Sad though it was, we all knew Lang wouldn’t be long for the Downton world. As I predicted last week, the arrival of so many convalescent soldiers pushed the shell-shocked valet right over the edge, inducing increased clumsiness, night terrors, and finally a full-on public breakdown. Tragically for Lang, PTSD was poorly understood at the time and virtually untreated (too bad   canine therapy was many decades in the future—Isis the Downton dog would have been perfect). Like many others in his situation, he was sent on his way with a good reference and two months’ wages to face a highly uncertain future—the vast majority of those with PTSD are suceptible to other psychiatric disorders, including major depression, and are more likely to engage in risky health behaviors such as alcohol and drug abuse. Hopefully Lang will manage to pull himself together and live a semi-normal life; I doubt we’ll ever get a difinitive answer regarding his future.

While we’re on the subject of mental health issues—what’s up with O’Brien? This woman’s all over the map, showing kindness and sympathy for Lang but none for other soldiers, holding a grudge against Bates for absolutely no reason at all, manipulating her mistress at every turn. Does she have some sort of personality disorder, another mental health issue or is she just a rather poorly written character? I’d love to have your thoughts.

In other news, Branson the revolutionary chauffeur who sets many a heart aflutter (including the fetching Lady Sybil’s) finds out his own heart is keeping him out of the service: he has a heart murmur. More specifically, he has mitral valve prolapse, a condition in which the mitral valve fails to close properly. It usually isn’t serious, although in some rare cases it can lead to infective endocarditis or mitral regurgitation, which are worth worrying about. Of course, if he finally manages to win over Lady Sybil, he’ll have a nurse around the house to keep an eye on his health!

Posted by: Brianne Moore at 9:38 pm