Tuesday, August 05, 2008

what the world needs now is another folk singer...

...like I need a hole in my head.

-Cracker, Teen Angst (What the World Needs Now)


Read Lunch with Heather Perry, where Mo of Neurophilosophy interviews a 37 year old woman who decided to undergo self-trepanation:
M: How exactly did you perform the trepanation?

HP: I used a hand trepan initially, but that wasn't proving to be terribly successful. Then there was a problem with the people who owned the property we were staying in, so we decided we'd have to just leave it. I wrapped my head up in a towel and we got out of there. A couple of days later, we had another go. We abandoned the hand trepan and got an electric drill instead. I injected myself with a local anaesthetic and then slashed a big T-shaped incision in my scalp, right down to the bone. I was sat there in the bathroom feeling quite relaxed and they started with the drill. It didn't take that long at all, probably about 20 minutes. Eventually I could feel a lot of fluid moving around. Apparently, there was a bit too much fluid shifting around, because they'd gone a little bit too far and I was leaking some through the hole, but this wasn't especially dangerous as there are three layer of meninges before you get to the brain.

18th century French illustration of trepanation

Not an especially appetizing lunchtime topic...

Cause, what the world needs now
are some true words of wisdom
like La la la la la la la la la la

-Cracker, ibid


1525 engraving of trepanation by Peter Treveris
From Hieronymus von Braunschweig's Buch der Cirurgia. Hantwirckung der Wundartzny 1497

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