Medical Care in the GFFA Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Layren, Jun 4, 2007.

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  1. Layren

    Layren Jedi Master star 5

    Oct 28, 2003
    Is there any real conclusion of how advanced medical care is in canon in the GFFA? I mean they have real prosthetic limbs, and Mara's illness in the EU, but there's also the fact that Anakin was too badly damaged post Mustafar for them to restore him to health so there's obviously things they can't fix, but then you have also in canon Mara being restored to full health in the Zahn trilogy and them being able to fix damaged nerves. I was wondering how plausible the idea of genetic defects and terminal illnesses like cancer and leukemia would be in the GFFA. As far as writing them, leave the Earth name or come up with something else entirely different so as to not wrench the reader out of the star wars universe? Any advice is welcome and would be greatly appreciated.
  2. JadeSolo

    JadeSolo Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 20, 2002
    There are definitely some things bacta just won't cure. The Force, on the other hand - I remember Mara lasting as long as she did against her illness because she kept it at bay with the Force.

    To me genetic defects, cancer, stuff like that, it's all very plausible in the GFFA. For every illness you cure, another one you've never seen before is going to pop up. There was that whole scare with the Krytos virus, for instance. For people who don't have access to magic Jedi healing powers, I imagine they'd end up like Anakin in the worst cases - stuck in a suit to keep them alive.

    As for naming them, unless it's something really Earthy like Lou Gehrig's disease, I think you can stick with the usual name. Or you can just keep it generic - lung cancer, throat cancer, etc.
  3. NYCitygurl

    NYCitygurl Manager Emeritus star 9 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jul 20, 2002
    I second Jade. I'd just put "cancer" or something if we need it. That way it's not too Earthy, but your readers get what you're talking about more easily than if you gave it a new name and tried to describe it.
  4. palpyisgod2

    palpyisgod2 Jedi Master star 2

    Aug 7, 2005
    In DarthIshtar's Love, Qui-Gon one character has leukemia. they just call it that. and when it comes to medical treatment, she just calls it chemotherapy.

    EDIT: Whoops! sorry Ish
  5. BzzzzMaster

    BzzzzMaster Jedi Youngling star 1

    May 26, 2007
    I don't see a problem with calling it "cancer", but you might want to get creative with cure. I use bactra for a lot of things in my fiction when it comes to cuts and bruises and flesh wounds. I used radiation on some internal stuff, and of course the Force if the character is a Jedi. But you can make something up and make it sound very star-warsy. Good luck.
  6. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Mar 26, 2001
    Actually, it's lymphoma, but here's my theory on generic terms for diseases. Basic translates most things at face value, so cancer or tumor or things like that would be left as is. If it's a specific syndrome, you may want to invent an alternative to it. For example, I gave Anakin and Obi-Wan chicken pox, but called it Kukretan Fever.
  7. dianethx

    dianethx Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Mar 1, 2002
    From Wookiepedia

    Bacta was a synthetic chemical that consisted of gelatinous, translucent red alazhi and kavam bacterial particles mixed within a colorless, viscous liquid called ambori. The bacterial particles seek out wounds and promote exceedingly fast tissue rejuvenation without scarring. It could be said that bacta was a "miracle fluid". Indeed, it did seem to work on almost every injury and ailment. It was the best medicine in the Galaxy, with Kolto being its very rare competitor.

    They also use cancer in SW jargon so it's acceptable.

    In the Med-corps books, bacta couldn't help everything. Viruses, especially, weren't suspectable to it. It was more for wounds. So I'm not sure it would be useful for cancers.

    Hope that helps.
  8. emerald54

    emerald54 Jedi Knight star 1

    Apr 4, 2007
    So, bacta is like an antibiotic to a point?

    Then what would things like a vaccine be called?

    Do they have things like hydrophobia and it's treatment?

    ... do they even have dogs to get hydrophobia from?

    EDIT: My friend pointed out not everyone knew what hydrophobia is so translation:

  9. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Mar 26, 2001
    Well, bacta also does tissue regeneration, cell replacement, etc. It's basically the catch-all for everything except the real nasties. They can also use it in an IV form instead of submersion.

    And they usually call vaccines innoculations or hypos.
  10. LLL

    LLL Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 16, 2000
    They had a goopy bandage material like that in veterinary medicine that was my favorite thing to granulate in NASTY wounds pretty fast. It was called "Biodress."

    Like everything that works really well in our profession, the company stopped making it.[face_frustrated]

    This is a good topic, because as far as medical treatment in the SW universe, you never really see anything but robot arms and bacta, bacta, bacta. It reminds me of that Gary Larson cartoon regarding the medical ailments of horses: "Shoot, shoot, shoot."

    I once had to give Palpatine multiple sclerosis, and it was crucial that you knew it was that disease. Nothing else would have worked. I felt silly using the Earth name, but there was no room for a half page explanation. I used the name and no one complained.
  11. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Mar 26, 2001
    There's also "Bactade" as mentioned in Tatooine Ghost, which is basically really foul-tasting healing gatorade.

    I know what you mean, LLL. I've done extensive research for my fics just because I give people realistic illnesses. I once had an 11-page vignette that was entirely about Jaina Solo dying of a brain tumor and you would not believe all the stuff I had to work out for it.
  12. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    In Powercoupling I had that burnsalve from Ganaris that was made out of seaweed and could heal burns faster than other treatments. And Jedihealers can treat patients in different ways.
  13. correllian_ale

    correllian_ale Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jun 20, 2005
    I know in LotF Boba Fett SPOILER FROM BLOOLINES: [hl=black]has a degenerative cell disease that can't be affected by Bacta, which could be comparable to Cancer, but I think it's rooted in his genes as a clone[/hl].

    Also, in the X-Wing series there was the doctor Ton Phanan who was allergic to Bacta, and thus had many prosthetic body parts because Bacta seems to be the only difinitive cure of most ailments. If you don't or can't respond to Bacta treatment, it seems the only alternative is prosthetics.

  14. 1Yodimus_Prime

    1Yodimus_Prime Jedi Master star 4

    Mar 13, 2004
    Hey, that would explain the cyborg dude on Cloud City.

    "Whoa! Why do you look like freakin' Robocop?!"

  15. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Mar 26, 2001
    According to X-wing: Wedge's Gamble, ryll tincture kills infection. Wedge uses it on Coruscant when he's injured by a breaking window but doesn't have access to bacta. Also, there's rylca, which is a combo of the two and was used in the bacta shortage.
  16. emerald54

    emerald54 Jedi Knight star 1

    Apr 4, 2007
    So would that heal internal wounds as well? Say if you had a punctured lung or something, would that help heal the wound?

    So if your allergic to Bacta, what would that be like being allergic to on Earth? Bandaids and neosporin?

    I had to explain what sudden infant death syndrome was without actually saying SIDS. Took up half a page before I got the general idea across.

    You know, now that I think about it, almost all of the medical knowledge I know came from researching for fics.

  17. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Chosen One star 9

    Mar 26, 2001
    I think it would be like being allergic to penicillin or latex. Things that are commonly good for medicine but lethal to you.
  18. emerald54

    emerald54 Jedi Knight star 1

    Apr 4, 2007
    Humm... didn't think of that. Another question that just occurred to me,do they even HAVE latex?

    I know you can get shots for birth control, and the pill, but condoms?


    *sigh* off on yet another book hunt. :rolleyes:
  19. Alexis_Wingstar

    Alexis_Wingstar Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 16, 2006
    I cannot remember which EU book it was, but I seem to recall some sort of epidemic or something needing a cure, and they came up with a vaccine for it. So a vaccine would be a vaccine.

    There's no need to make up some new word for everything under the sun... that would mean we'd have to start a whole new language. :p Like others said, if it has a definite Earth quality to it, such as Lou Gherig's disease which has a name of a RL person in it, then you should change it. But, stuff like the common cold, cancer, hiccups, etc., should be safe to crossover into the SW universe.
  20. DarthBreezy

    DarthBreezy Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 4, 2002

    Lou Gherig had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS... We're writers, creativity shouldn't be strangled by the 'established canon' of other writers just because they haven't thought of it. You can still be creative and still sound "Star Wars-y".

    In one of my works, I created an illness colloquially known as "Tarkin's Croup" - fever, congestion... no known cure - what fun!
  21. NYCitygurl

    NYCitygurl Manager Emeritus star 9 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jul 20, 2002
    Somelone named Gil (Corran Horn's CorSec boss, first X-Wing book) was captured and torted, and he was allergic to the bacta they put him in to heal him before the next round of torture, and he died.
  22. Alethia

    Alethia Jedi Master star 5

    Feb 13, 2005
    Layren wanted me to post this link a couple of days ago, but I kind of forgot... *coughs*

    [link=]Fanfic_med[/link] is a Yahoo Group that's for fan fic authors who need medical advice for their stories. Occasionally there will be a question about a sci-fi fandom and people answer those too, so you should be fine asking about Star Wars. Great group and very informative.
  23. emerald54

    emerald54 Jedi Knight star 1

    Apr 4, 2007
    Tarkin's Croup? I love it! :D

    I know I'm posting a lot of questions, but I have a hard time getting my hands on the books, so to the web it is.

    And I agree with you on the Star Wars-y sounding name, unless it's something that would take forever to explain and confuse your readers. Simian Hemorrhagic Fever is one example of something that only needed a simple explanation.

    If it's something where only one in ten million have it, just say it's name, as I don't like haveing to do extra research. :rolleyes:

    And the OCD pops up yet again.
  24. DarthBreezy

    DarthBreezy Force Ghost star 6

    Jun 4, 2002
    Oh yes, you can have fun with all sorts of things...

    From the story in which it occurs...

    ?Master,? Luke said, exasperation creeping into his voice. ?The messages can wait. Now will you tell me what you think is wrong??

    Schurke sighed and ran his fingers through his hair, as if trying to delay the inevitable, and when his eyes met Luke?s once more they were as full of sadness as he had ever seen them.

    ?Luke,? he said at last. ?Have you ever heard of ?Tarkin?s croup???

    Luke considered, then shook his head. ?No. Not really.?

    ?It came to Corellia after the destruction of the first Death Star,? Schurke said softly. ?At first, people joked that Corellia would choke on his ashes, and then people started to die??

    Luke thinned his lips, perhaps unconsciously picking up the habit from Aubé, but allowed Master Canaille to continue at his own pace,

    ?Mostly it was the children,? Schurke said wearily. ?For the most part, adults would recover as often as not, but in the children it was almost always fatal. Quick??

    ?Where did it come from?? Luke whispered, although in his heart he already knew. Please, don?t let this be another stone to lay on my father?s grave, he thought.

    Schurke leaned back in his chair, fingers knitted thoughtfully under his chin. ?No,? he assuaged the stricken young man before him. ?Vader?s interest was directed at finding a certain young Rebel after all, and Vader had developed an aversion to such ? shall we say, impersonal ? wholesale slaughter.?

    Schurke fell silent, allowing Luke this small moment of absolution before continuing on.

    ?Kam and the other Healers ? and surely by now you realize what many of them are ? nearly worked themselves to death trying to find a cure.?

    ?Jedi?? Luke said softly. ?But how??

    Schurke ignored the question. ?There is no cure, Luke,? he said softly. ?The Healers can comfort, treat the symptoms, and sometimes the victim recovered.?

    ?My daughter?? Luke began, seeing Schurke?s impassive reaction, grew angry. ?How can you just sit there?? He cried out in a growing fury. ?That?s your granddaughter in there!?

    ?It came back, Luke,? Schurke said softly. ?After nearly a generation, it came back when Pemberian was less than three seasons old. Of course, she has only fleeting memories.?

    So it's not necessarily the illness itself, but the reactions to it...
  25. RebelGrrl

    RebelGrrl Jedi Master star 4

    Jan 13, 2006
    I'm more inclined to believe that Darth Vader could not be further treated because Palpatine did not wish it to be so, than by any lack of medical technology at the time. Vader could have been left in bacta for some time to heal his burns. It's unlikely he'd regain former appearance without cosmetic surgery, but he'd've had a more plastic appearance than ropey-scarred appearance. He would have been in less pain. Cloned replacements for damaged tissues and organs could have been obtained. To not have to wait for a clone to grow to adult size, lung and esophageal (sp?) material could have been grown from cloned cells on a framework and transplanted. Cloned muscle, skin, and veins could have been wrapped around artificial skeletal structures to replace arms and legs.

    Except there wouldn't be the menacing image of The Suit, and Vader would not be in constant pain and dependent on it for survival. Vader's imprisonment was not because the state of medical technology could not help him. It's one more in a long string of Darth Sidious's crimes.

    So, to my view, what can be done for someone medically has some non-medical factors to be considered. Expense, time, and motivation. Poor people won't be getting fancy prosthetics. They may not even be getting bacta. The Rebel Alliance is going to have limited resources and be put in the position of people dying from treatable injuries and illnesses because the shipment didn't come that month. Anakin had that gold robotic hand because there wasn't time to grow tissue for a more organic one... there was a war on.
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