Neurology daze

The latest Neuropod podcast tackles deep brain stimulation, blast injuries in soldiers, fibre-tracking brain scans and a group of hungover neurologists on an early morning run, in coverage from the recent American Academy of Neurology conference. In fact, it’s one of the best Nature Neuroscience podcasts I’ve heard in ages.

There’s also a fascinating bit about the history of phrenology by neurologist Daniel Schneider. Phrenology was the curious 19th practice of ‘reading bumps’ on the head to divine someone’s character based on the flawed idea that differences in brain structure would affect skull growth.

Schneider has searched medical and non-medical publications of the time and found, contrary to the belief that the practice was simply a fashion among the public, that the medical profession was more approving of the idea than the general populace.

As the practice was started by medical men it seemed respectable and gave a tool to help explain some scientific questions of the time, even if it didn’t live up to its promises.

As an aside, I note from the scientific programme of the meeting that neuropsychologist Brenda Milner was presenting some of her latest work on the recently departed amnesic patient HM.

It was pointed out to me that Milner is 92. Respect to that.

Link to Neuropod homepage.
mp3 of this podcast.

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