Between the ages of 12 and 29, while Nelson was learning his profession, he was subject to various medical and tropical ailments including the recurring fever of malaria that occurred right through his life, and also an episode of scurvy - Vitamin C deficiency.
From 29 to 35, Nelson was 'on the beach', with no ship, living in Norfolk.
Aged 35 to 47, it was battle trauma that he suffered - and this is where these three main physicians were so key in keeping him alive.
So ... who were they?
Michael Jefferson dealt with the injury that cost Nelson his right eye in 1794, when he was on the Island of Corsica attempting mount a land assault which failed.
In February 1797 Thomas Eshelby was the surgeon who diagnosed Nelson's traumatic abdominal hernia, caused by a blow to his abdomen by heavy gear on his ship.
He advised rest, which Nelson ignored.
In July 1797 Nelson was promoted to Admiral and knighted. His ship HMS Theseus was involved in at battle at Santa Cruz where a musket ball shot through his upper right arm. He was sure he would die.
"I am a dead man!", he cried.
A tourniquet saved him from exsanguinating and Eshelby amputated most of his right arm.
Post operative pain was such that Nelson had to return to England accompanied by Thomas Eshelby.
Michael Jefferson reappeared and he wrote letters for Nelson.
Eventually a piece of 'ligament' came off the stump and the pain went.
In March 1798 Nelson joined HMS Vanguard and took Michael Jefferson with him as his surgeon.
In August 1798, during the successful Battle of the Nile against the French, Nelson sustained a severe head injury which caused a 3” flap to flop across his forehead bleeding heavily.
Again Nelson thought that his end had come.
"I am killed!", he cried.
Jefferson realised the injury was not life threatening and used adhesives to put the flap back in place.
Nelson was so pleased to have survived that he arranged for Jefferson to be appointed to the hospital in Malta.
Unfortunately Jefferson disgraced himself in Malta, was dismissed his post and is not mentioned again.
It was in 1798 in Malta that the affair with Lady Hamilton began and Nelson turned his back on devoted wife Frances, who was in England.
Subsequent analysis of Nelson's behaviour at this time conjectures that he had sustained a brain injury causing a significant change in his character and behaviour.
George Magrath was Nelson's surgeon at this time and when he obtained a shore posting in Gibraltar he recommended William Beatty as his replacement.
It was William Beatty who tended to Nelson on the Orlop deck of HMS Victory when Nelson was shot by a sniper in the rigging of a French ship.
The musket penetrated his left chest, traversing though vital structures in his chest and transecting his spinal cord, taking with it a piece of gold and thread from Nelson's epaulette.
Yet again Nelson announced that he was dying and this time he was right.
The rest, as they say, is history.