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Murdo Morrison

TB meningitis at 20

TB meningitis

At the age of 20 I was shore based at the Royal Navy establishment at Fort St Angelo Malta.    

I led a fit and active life and I did notice that I appeared to be losing weight.   This did not bother me unduly but one morning I woke with a blinding headache.    

As required I 'reported sick' and have a vague memory of collapsing and being attended to.   From then on for the next three weeks or so I would see for a brief period and then sleep took over.   Much later I was to find out that I had TB in both lungs plus meningitis.  

Treatment consisted of lumbar punctures for the meningitis on a daily basis where fluid was removed from my spine and streptomycin injected.   

I was flown back to the UK and admitted to Chatham Naval Hospital where I was treated for three months.  At some time I had crossed eyes and double vision, but they eventually came back to the normal position.  

Having been in bed for a period of time I had to adjust to walking again but all that was achieved with the care and attention I received.
I had no other effects except for a few months there was some loss of recall from before and after the illness.  

I was eventually discharged from the Royal Navy bringing my career to an end.  Since then - and I am now 70 - I have enjoyed a full life with occasional medical problems but none of the scale of my Malta experience.  I had a long career in an oil company and a very interesting period of community involvement.