A record of the amazing ‘awakening’ of patients with sleeping sickness, by Dr Oliver Sacks.

SKU: 1125
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Year Produced: 1974
Running time: 43 minutes
Trailer:  Watch on Youtube
Watch online: ideo on demand


A unique record of the miraculous ‘awakening* of patients from 40 years of hopeless, silent sleep’, to a vivid, full enjoyment of their life, at least for a short period. The patients had been victims of the mysterious ‘sleeping sickness’ of 1917. In 1969 Dr Oliver Sacks started to treat some of the most hopeless cases with the new drug L-Dopa, and the results were astonishing. Previously bedridden patients walked, and those who had been speechless for years started to talk and give an account of their lost years. Dr Sacks kept a film record of these extraordinary responses and of the patients during the following months. In the programme both he and the patients talk about an experience which is unlikely to be repeated again in the history of medicine.

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