From our good friend George, surf on over to this very interesting article on Hitler's chronic gastrointestinal ailments and how the treatments of a quack doctor might have contributed to Hitler losing control of the war effort. Some snippets from the article over at The Smart Set blog:
Guests at the Berghof, Hitler’s private chalet in the Bavarian Alps, must have endured some unpleasant odors in the otherwise healthful mountain air.Things that make you go, "Hmmmmm..."
It may sound like a Woody Allen scenario, but medical historians are unanimous that Adolf was the victim of uncontrollable flatulence. Spasmodic stomach cramps, constipation and diarrhea, possibly the result of nervous tension, had been Hitler’s curse since childhood and only grew more severe as he aged. As a stressed-out dictator, the agonizing digestive attacks would occur after most meals: Albert Speer recalled that the Führer, ashen-faced, would leap up from the dinner table and disappear to his room...
Hitler’s stomach problems may even have played their part in his losing the war, thanks to this shadowy figure of Dr. Morell, an incompetent quack who took over Hitler’s medical care in 1937...For example, to combat recurrences of the volcanic stomach problems, Morell plied him with a remedy called “Dr. Köster’s Anti-gas pills,” which contained significant amounts of strychnine – and Hitler often took as many as 16 of the little black pills a day. The sallow skin, glaucous eyes and attention lapses noted by observers later in the war are consistent with strychnine poisoning; another ingredient in the pills, antropine, causes mood wings from euphoria to violent anger. Even more peculiar were the injections of amphetamines that Morell administered every morning before breakfast from 1941, which may have exacerbated the erratic behavior, inflexibility, paranoia and indecision that Hitler began to display increasingly as the war ground on.