Neurologist: Hitler Had Parkinson's Disease
Sep. 29, 1995
STUTTGART, Germany (AP) _ Adolf Hitler's shaky hands and dismal appearance in his final days were at least partly due to Parkinson's disease, a new study asserts.
Hitler looked like a broken man in the days before he killed himself in his Berlin bunker on April 30, 1945. One of his generals later wrote that Hitler's hands trembled, he walked with a stoop and his eyes glowed.
Ellen Gibbels, a Cologne neurologist and psychiatrist, examined Third Reich documentaries of Hitler and concluded that he had suffered from Parkinson's disease since 1941.
The Stuttgart monthly magazine ``Kosmos'' reported on Gibbels' theory in its latest issue.
But there are other theories as well.
Historians have said a 1944 assassination attempt that nearly killed Hitler, an addiction to drugs and the stresses of war contributed to his ill health.
Hitler lived without fresh air or exercise in underground bunkers, historian William L. Shirer wrote in ``The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich.''
He wrote that Hitler suffered more frequent hysterical rages as the war drew to a close, and his emotional fits were accompanied by trembling hands and feet. Shirer also wrote that Hitler suffered from dizziness after the July 1944 bombing that shattered the tympanic membranes of his ears.