Monthly Archives: January 2014

There probably isn’t an app for that

A man with drug-induced psychosis attempted to swallow his smartphone and the case was reported in the medical journal Internal and Emergency Medicine. A 35 year-old man with no significant past medical history presented to the emergency department (ED) after abusing phencyclidine (PCP). Responding to command auditory hallucinations, he attempted to swallow his 4 cm […]

The cutting edge of brain science technologies

National Geographic has an excellent article that gives a tour of some of the latest technologies of neuroscience that are likely to be leading the way in understanding the brain over the next decade. You can read the full article online but you need to complete a free registration first. A typical publication ploy but, […]

The hallucinated demons of intensive care

I’ve got an article in The Observer about the psychological impact of being a patient in intensive care that can include trauma, fear and intense hallucinations. This has only been recently recognised as an issue and with mental disorders being detected in over half of post-ICU patients it has sparked a serious re-think of how […]

2014-01-17 Spike activity

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Wired magazine has an excellent profile of artificial intelligence bossman Geoff Hinton. Is it time we stopped ‘sectioning‘ people? Thought-provoking piece on the excellent Psychiatry SHO blog. The New York Times has an insightful piece on what the ‘marshmallow study’ really tells us about […]

What’s the evidence on using rational argument to change people’s minds?

Contributoria is an experiment in community funded, collaborative journalism. What that means is that you can propose an article you’d like to write, and back proposals by others that you’d like to see written. There’s an article I’d like to write: What’s the evidence on using rational argument to change people’s minds?. Here’s something from […]

Parental advisory: teenage kicks in progress

New York Magazine has an excellent piece on whether adolescence is really a time of turmoil for young people or whether it is actually the parents that find their kids’ teenage years the most challenging. The article is a brilliant alternative take on adolescence and looks into a range of studies on how teens develop […]

Ghost psychiatry

The Australian Journal of Parapsychology has an article about post-traumatic stress disorder in people who have been murdered. I suspect diagnosing mental disorder in those who have passed onto another plane of existence isn’t the easiest form of mental health assessment but it seems this gentleman is determined to give it a go. Psychological phenomena […]

Put your hands up and move away from the therapy

An editorial in Molecular Psychiatry has been titled “Launching the War on Mental Illness” – which, considering the effects of war on mental health, must surely win a prize for the most inappropriate metaphor in psychiatry. But it also contains a curious Freudian slip. Five times in the article, the project is described as the […]

2014-01-10 Spike activity

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Not-So-Sweet Home: The Persistence of Domestic Violence. Important piece from Nautilus. The Lancet discusses whether, once again, psychiatry is being used for political repression in Russia. Are we too keen to turn crime into a mental health issues? asks Spiked Online. Nature has an […]

The pull for lobotomy

The Psychologist has a fascinating article by historian Mical Raz on what patients and families thought about the effects of lobotomy. Raz looks at the letters sent between arch-lobotomist Walter Freeman and the many families he affected through his use of the procedure. Contrary to the image of the ‘evil surgeon who didn’t care about […]

noob 2 l33t: now with graphs

Myself and Mike Dewar have just had a paper published in the journal Psychological Science. In it we present an analysis of what affects how fast people learn, using data from over 850,000 people who played an online game called Axon (designed by our friends Preloaded. This is from the abstract: In the present study, […]

2014-01-04 Spike activity

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: So Happy 2014 and all that. Let’s get on with it. Brain Watch has an excellent piece on 10 Surprising Links Between Hollywood and Neuroscience. Talking of Hollywood, The Brain That Wouldn’t Die, inspiration for one of the great pulp movie posters of all […]


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