Literature contains a number of cases in which lightning provided
a healing impetus. In 1776, Mrs. Wynne went to Dublin to consult
with several surgeons because she had a large tumor in the left breast.
The surgeons didn’t want to operate, so she returned home. She
was looking out of the window of her home when lightning struck it and
set fire to the roof. The stroke passed through her left shoulder and
down her back. She tumbled to the floor and was found later that
evening. Dr. Georgius Hicks visited her two days later and found that
her breast tumor was smaller and softer. In a few weeks, it was completely
gone. Thereafter, he decided to try electric shock to treat breast
cancer. With electrical shocks, he was able to reduce the cancerous
tumors and pain in two women.
Around 1850, an English farmer developed cancer of the lower
lip and chin. He agreed to have surgery, but before the scheduled
date, he was out plowing his fields when he was struck by lightning.
Both of his horses were killed, and his plow was shattered. A few
weeks later, the cancer was distinctly less, and in months it disappeared.
He enjoyed good health for the next ten years. The cancer
then reappeared, and the man died.
Thomas Young was a farmer near Dukedom, Tennessee. Cancer
began on his face, so the surgeon removed part of his lower jaw. The
cancer continued to spread, and by June of 1932, he was nearly dead.
He chose to spend his last days lying in bed or on a hammock under
the trees. One day a sudden storm came and struck one of the trees
to which his hammock was attached to. The bolt stunned him and
ripped the soles from his shoes. In a few days, he began to feel better.
The cancerous sores started to heal, and soon he was back to normal. Source
American Journal of Science 3:100, 1821 “Case of a Paralytic Affection,
Cured by a Stroke of
Lightning” D. Olmsted
American Journal of Science 6:329, 1823 “Cure of Asthma by a Stroke
of Lightning” R. Emerson
Lancet 1:77, 1880 “Therapeutic Effects of Lightning Upon Cancer” A.
Medical and Philosophical Comment 4:82, 1776 “An Account of the Effect
of Lightning in
Discussion of a Tumor of the Breast” A. Eason
Western Journal of Medicine and Surgery 13:162, 1846 “Effects of
Lightning” J. Leconte
Unschuld, Paul Medicine in China: A History of Ideas Berkeley: University
of California Press, 1985