by Endthenal Alvo
Book of Common Diseases
It is important for anyone, especially travelers, to be aware of common diseases and how they are spread. Most common diseases are contracted through exposure to various beasts or someone already infected. Diseased animals, alive or dead, can infect mer or man. Travelers are in particular danger, due to not developing local immunities, so one must make sure to have plenty cure disease potions on hand for lengthy journeys.
Listed here are the sixteen types of common diseases found in Morrowind and the nearby isle of Solstheim, as well as the creatures that carry them. These diseases are divided into three kinds: mild, serious, and acute. Common diseases are not usually fatal, but it is important to cure them as soon as possible, for your sake and for the sake of those around you.< This book is divided into two sections. The first lists diseases contracted through animal contact in the wild. The second section deals with diseases commonly found in towns and villages, either contracted through human contact or farm animals.
Common Diseases in the Wild
Ataxia is a mild common disease that affects the victim’s strength and agility. Symptoms include generalized pain and muscle stiffness. It often infects alit and the plague bears of Solstheim.
Ataxia’s symptoms can be temporarily alleviated by taking potions of restore strength and restore agility. Chewing on raw chokeweed will temporarily alleviate the pain, if a cure potion is not readily available, but this has the unwanted side-effect of draining the sufferer’s luck.
Brown rot is a mild disease that reduces the victim’s strength and affects behavior. Symptoms include necrosis and sleeplessness. It is usually contracted from contact with bonewalkers – greater or lesser – and sometimes, though rarely, through other forms of undead.
Potions of restore strength and personality can be taken to alleviate some of the disease’s symptoms. A poultice of gravedust and muck may be applied to combat necrosis until either a healer or a proper cure potion is found.
Collywobbles is a serious disease affecting the victim’s strength, endurance, and mobility. Symptoms include uncontrollable shaking and chronic weariness. It is usually contracted from shalks.
Potions of restore strength, endurance, and speed can be taken in lieu of a proper cure potion. This will also temporarily alleviate the sufferer’s shaking.
Droops is a serious disease that affects the victim’s strength. Symptoms include weak and flaccid muscles. It may be contracted from all forms of kwama.
A strong potion of restore strength will temporarily aid the sufferer. However, long term exposure to this disease may cause permanent muscular damage. It is particularly acute in children, and may hinder their growth and development if not treated immediately.
Helljoint is a mild common disease affecting the victim’s mobility and dexterity. Symptoms include persistent irritation and inflammation of the joints. It is often contracted from cliff racers.
Potions of restore agility and speed may be taken until a cure potion is taken. To alleviate the irritation and inflammation, a poultice of red lichen and willow anther may be applied.
Rotbone is a disease which causes mild fatigue in the victim. Symptoms include drowsiness and a dull ache in the joints. It is contracted from the durzogs of Mournhold.
Chewing on saltrice is the common method of combating the symptoms of this disease. A good hot meal consisting of bread and kwama eggs is also recommended until it is cured.
Swamp Fever is a mild disease commonly found along coastal regions. Symptoms include high body temperature and delirium. It is contracted through exposure to mudcrabs.
Potions of restore strength and endurance can be taken if a cure potion is not handy. Muck is usually applied to the sufferer’s skin to combat the fever.
Witbane is an acute common disease that affects memory, and victims will often seem disoriented. It is often contracted from the common rat.
A potion of restore agility can be taken if a cure potion is not immediately on hand. This is only a temporary measure however. A proper cure should be administered as quickly as possible. Prolonged exposure to this disease may cause permanent memory loss.
Yellow Tick is a mild disease affecting the victim’s strength and mobility. Symptoms include dark, bruise-like swellings that are painful to the touch. It is often contracted from kagouti and the plague wolves of Solstheim.
Potions of restore strength and speed can be taken until a proper cure is administered. A poultice of green lichen and muck should also be applied to hinder swelling.
The following diseases are most often contracted through contact with either humans or farm animals, and not from the beasts they are often attributed to by local healers. The casual adventurer will not likely catch these diseases in the wild.
Chills is an acute common disease that affects the victim’s mind and coordination. Symptoms include clumsiness and mental confusion, as well as extreme fluctuations in body temperature. Locals believe chills comes from contact with the undead, but it is rarely contracted in this manner. It is more often spread from person to person. Scholars believe the myth comes from the sufferer’s hallucinations, who often claim to have been visited by angry ghosts while in bed.
Potions of restore intelligence, agility, and willpower must be taken if a cure potion is not readily at hand. Due to the potent hallucinations, the sufferer should not be left alone until a cure is administered.
Dampworm is another serious disease that affects the victim’s mobility. Symptoms include uncontrollable muscle spasms and twitching. It is said to be contracted from nix-hounds, but this is yet unproven. This author has yet to treat a single case contracted in this manner. It is more often contracted by people living in unhygienic conditions. It is caused by a parasite that burrows under the skin and afflicts the muscle tissues and central nervous system.
A strong potion of restore speed can be taken to temporarily alleviate dampworm’s symptoms. There is no way to control the spasms other than a proper potion of curing, so it should be treated immediately. In severe cases, a patient may require several treatments until all parasites are eliminated. Patients are also recommended to fumigate their homes by burning lichen (of any variety) for at least three days.
Greenspore is a serious common disease that affects the victim’s behavior. Symptoms include irritability, shortness of breath, and violent outbursts, and may also include mild dementia. It is said to be contracted from slaughterfish, but is more often caught in swamps. Its real cause is a fungal spore, sometimes found growing on slaughterfish, which lodges itself in the sufferer’s lungs and begins to grow.
A potion of restore personality can be administered in lieu of a potion of curing, but will not aid the sufferer’s dementia. Along with a potion of curing, patients are also recommended to inhale smoke from burning lichen several times a day, for about a week.
Rattles is a mild common disease that affects the victim’s willpower and dexterity. Symptoms include muscle spasms and listlessness. It is said to be contracted from nix-hounds, but this is unfounded. In truth, this disease only tends to affect children. Its true cause is unknown, though parents who suffered this affliction as a child will often find it affects their children as well.
In acute cases, a cure potion is administered to the infected child. This rarely helps however, and often the child is given either specially made potions of drain fatigue to calm them down, or made to chew a gum made from shalk resin which produces a similar effect. However, this disease is often misdiagnosed, and usually just a good spanking is in order.
Rockjoint is an acute disease affecting the victim’s manual dexterity. Symptoms include painful swelling and immobility in the joints. It may be contracted from the domesticated guar, but is more often caused by dirty or infected wounds. It is most commonly contracted by farmers.
A potion of restore agility should be administered to the patient immediately if a cure potion is not readily available. Prolonged exposure to this disease can cause permanent deterioration of the joint tissues. A poultice of red lichen and willow anther can be administered to alleviate the victim’s suffering.
Rust Chancre is a mild common disease affecting the victim’s mobility and behavior. Symptoms include swelling, rash, and painful muscle spasms. It may be contracted from the waste rat, not the common kind, and is rare. The disease is usually only found in Ashlander camps.
Potions of restore personality and speed can be taken to combat some of this disease’s effects. A poultice of muck and red lichen should also be administered to alleviate the victim’s suffering until a proper cure can be obtained.
This common disease is serious and affects the victim’s mind and behavior. Symptoms include hallucinations, and an itchy, unsightly skin condition resembling snake scales. It may be contracted from netches, but is rare. Usually only contracted through prolonged contact with the beasts, it is most often found in netch herders.
Potions of restore intelligence, willpower, and personality should be administered immediately if a cure potion is not handy. Rubbing muck on the skin will also alleviate the skin condition somewhat, and should be applied every day for a month even after a cure is administered.
Wither is a mild common disease that affects a victim’s strength and endurance. Symptoms include loss of energy and shortness of breath. Wither is common along the coasts, and said to be contracted from dreugh. This theory is unfounded however, and it is more often contracted from other people.
Potions of restore strength and endurance are often taken in lieu of a cure potion. Sufferers can also chew on saltrice to alleviate the symptoms. This disease tends not to be taken seriously and is rarely properly treated in poorer communities, hence its tendency to spread rapidly through such areas.
Book of Blight Diseases
The blight diseases of Vvardenfell stem from the Red Mountain region, and are commonly caused by prolonged exposure to ash storms. As such, blight is common in Ashlander communities. Many animals also roam this area, so it is common for hunters and travelers to contract blight from exposed animals. These diseases are severe and resist common cures. A special potion of cure blight must be administered to the sufferer.
There are two kinds of blight disease: wasting diseases, which attack one or more of an organism’s systems; and abnormal growth diseases, which distort the organism’s functions and structures. There are four different blight diseases, each of which will be covered in this volume along with the creatures that typically carry them. Corprus is also mentioned, though there is currently no known cure.
Ash-chancre is an acute blight disease affecting the victim’s behavior. It is usually contracted through exposure to cliff racers or blighted kwama of any kind. The sufferers of this disease usually show no outward physical symptoms, only distorted reasoning and a barely perceptible drop in body temperature.
Ash-chancre can be temporarily alleviated by taking a strong potion of restore personality. This will only mask the symptoms however, and prolonged exposure can permanently alter the victim’s perceptions and cause chronic depression. It should be treated immediately upon diagnosis.
Ash woe is an acute blight disease affecting the victim’s will and thought processes. It is most commonly contracted from ash ghouls, ash slaves, or blighted shalk. Acute symptoms include a greying of the skin, emaciation, and tumorous growths on the body.
Strong potions of restore willpower and restore intelligence can be taken to alleviate symptoms. However, if not properly treated, the victim will eventually show signs of permanent brain damage. Such victims will eventually suffer the unfortunate fate of becoming ash ghouls.
Black-heart is an acute blight disease affecting the victim’s strength and endurance. It is often contracted from blighted alit, nix-hounds, or rats, and can also be contracted from lame corprus. The physical symptoms of black-heart include muscular degeneration and gradual bone malformation.
The symptoms of black-heart can be temporarily alleviated by taking potions of restore strength and endurance. However, the muscular tissue will continue to waste away, and any bone growth in young victims will be severely stunted and malformed if not treated immediately. In adults, the bones will gradually twist, causing permanent crippling through extended exposure.
Chanthrax is a rare acute blight affecting the victim’s dexterity and mobility. It is only known to be contracted through exposure to blighted kagouti. Its outward symptoms are a severe swelling of the joints, acute pain, rashes, and fever.
Chanthrax symptoms can be temporarily alleviated by taking potions of restore agility and speed. Prolonged exposure will result in permanent damage to the soft tissues of the body, and scaling of the skin. If not treated in time, the victim can also look forward to a severely reduced life expectancy.
Corprus is a rare form of blight disease that cannot go unmentioned in this text. This deadly disease attacks the victim’s mind and body. The victims grow insane and extremely violent, and their bodies sprout massive tumorous growths. It gradually deforms the whole body until the victim is nearly unrecognizable as human. The disease’s progress varies from victim to victim. Another interesting fact is, in contracting corprus, one becomes immune to other forms of disease. It is always fatal, but its progress can be either rapid, or keep the victim in agony for years.
It was this author’s privilege to study the victims in Divayth Fyr’s Corprusarium at one time, and I have come to a few conclusions. It is unproven that corprus can be spread through contact with a victim, and in fact, this author has never in his career seen it spread such a manner. Through prolonged contact, I would almost say it is completely safe to come into contact with corprus victims, except of course for their violent tendencies. The real cause of corprus is unknown, but there may be something to it being referred to as “The Divine Disease.” There is no real known cause. In fact, the fear of the spread of corprus through human contact may be pure fear-mongering. There is no doubt it is contracted somehow, and seemingly randomly, but it still requires further research to pinpoint its true source.