Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Trepanation, the Return

It's been far too long since I've updated this blog with news of the brain, but I've been meaning to note the interesting "Trepanation for dementia" post I came across on BoingBoing awhile back, and so, late but better than never: The story of Russian neurophysiologist Yuri Moskalenko, who is looking into trepanation as a possible treatment for dementia. After studying 15 people who had undergone trepanation for head injuries, he concluded that the trepanated had a "cranial compliance ("a measure of the elasticity of the brain's vascular system") [that] was around 20 per cent higher than the average for their age". Because a reduced flow of blood and cerebrospinal fluid impairs the delivery of oxygen to the brain and waste away from it, he believes that a 4-square-centimeter hole could increase the blood flow and could therefore be an effective treatment for dementia.

To read the full story, see Like a hole in the head: The return of trepanation.

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