Review: When Breath Becomes Air

“The fact of death is unsettling. Yet there is no other way to live.” Why do we do what we do – choose a career in science, in business, or in the arts? Why do we procreate, and why do we sometimes choose not to? Is it that we are avoiding the inevitability of lifeContinue reading “Review: When Breath Becomes Air”

Dahl’s Contribution to Medicine

My fascination with author Roald Dahl is well-documented throughout this blog. One of my friends on campus, who shares my love of reading and history (and is a fan of QI) recently increased my esteem for Dahl even more. You may remember that on Roald Dahl Day I posted about the author’s interest in theContinue reading “Dahl’s Contribution to Medicine”

Cranial Nerves and Dirty Minds

Cranial Nerves are little buggers. They’re one of those things that you need to study and study and study and repeat, and then actually have to recall when in a real-life patient situation. (GCS is also on of those things.) Fortunately, there are many mnemonics to remind us of the cranial nerves and their functions.Continue reading “Cranial Nerves and Dirty Minds”

The Girl with the Smile

She is here for a nerve conduction test and an assessment of her Thalidomide regimen. Thalidomide: The morning sickness wonder-drug-turned-teratogenic-horror that gave birth to deformed and ill babies. It has some wonderful other uses. Crohn’s Disease and Myelodisplasia run from this drug. And mycobacteria hate the drug too. But special permission is required to use such aContinue reading “The Girl with the Smile”

Cryptococcal Meningitis: Opportunistic Vagrant

There are many bad ways to die. I’ve seen some of them. But one that perhaps haunts me most is the CLAT+ patients. The Human Cell Line Activation Test (CLAT) is one of the most common tests utilised to diagnose Cryptococcal Meningitis. Cryptococ is in itself quite commonly found throughout nature – for example inContinue reading “Cryptococcal Meningitis: Opportunistic Vagrant”

The Importance of Clarity: A Story

Today is fibromyalgia awareness day. I find it quite apt that this happens the day before Mother’s Day. For as long as I can remember, my mom has suffered from pain. She has always been particularly sensitive to noise, bright lights and abrupt touch. It was only when we were little and clumsy that itContinue reading “The Importance of Clarity: A Story”

Book Review: The Brain That Changes Itself

Since my recent discovery of the myriad of book blogs, Goodreads and the ability to read while maintaining my schedule has led to me rather bravely attempting a bookish challenge, I have decided to blog about those books. For the category of Science and Natural History I read The Brain that Changes itself by Norman Doidge.Continue reading “Book Review: The Brain That Changes Itself”

Brain Cut: Fatal Fall?

We are privileged to have weekly tutorials from the only forensic brain pathologist in Africa. He is retiring soon – which is sad, because he is clearly a genius. He also teaches with passion, which seems rare in our field. Anyway, we had an interesting case during brain cut today. A 22-year-old man fell. TheContinue reading “Brain Cut: Fatal Fall?”

Le Document Pour MB.ChB.III

The inspiration for this document came during my second year while studying for an end-of-block test. At the same time, the then-first years were studying for Pathology, aided by “Le Document”. Somewhere in this time period I looked at a fellow second year, threw my hands in the air rather dramatically and exclaimed, “I wishContinue reading “Le Document Pour MB.ChB.III”