Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Dammit Jim I'm a Doctor

Four or five years ago I created a PowerPoint slide for a series of talks that my colleague and noted stroke recovery researcher Stephen J. Page do. It was sort of a joke slide; above is a copy of it. The idea was that at some point in the distant future Dr. "Bones" McCoy would have a machine that you simply point at a stroke survivors brain that makes the boo boo go bye-bye. Of course it was a joke ha ha.

A few months ago we got a transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) machine that has a special aiming feature on it. You play it like a video game. First MRI data is fed into the TMS machine. This allows for whoever is doing the treatment to see the person's brain as they "zap" it with electromagnetism. The treatments are being done by a couple of our lab's physical therapists. When the stroke survivors brain is "zapped" the the muscle that corresponds to that part of the brain, the part of the brain they are targeting, twitches.

The B1XGX: Stroke Eliminator. Not such a joke anymore.

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