Ludwig Van Beethoven

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     He first reported a psychiatric symptom in a letter he wrote at age sixteen. He described himself as having “melancholia” which was “almost as great a torture as my [asthma]”. Beethoven also suffered from hearing problems, which he first described at the age of 27 as a “hum and buzz day and night”. Then, he started to have gastrointestinal problems. He describes having colic pains, sensitive abdomen, and violent diarrhea. By the age of 56, he wrote that he was stuck in bed with “dropsy” which today we would call a swelling of the abdomen due to liver failure. This is what he eventually died from. 

     On top of everything else, Beethoven also had respiratory problems from around the age of 34 to 55 including colds, coughs, and chest infections. Finally, late in his life at the age of 52 until 53, Beethoven suffered from eye problems which gave him sore eyes and made it difficult to see. This is the only illness that he recovered from.

The ear