NATS 1860 Note 2
- Localization theory:
- Trepanation: Medical procedure in which a hole or series of holes is removed
from the skull for medical or traditionally religious purposes. Trepanated
skulls first discovered are dated to be over 10,000 years old and oldest skulls
were discovered from within the Neolithic region. Alexandre Francois Barbie
du Botage was the first to notably analyze the process of trepanation.
The process of trepanation was adapted in such countries as Mesopotamia,
Ancient Idea, Ancient China, Native Peru and Spain. Based on archeogical
discoveries, scientists have been able to determine the percentile of survival
rate being 63% based on skulls having a smooth texture (in the holes)
indicating a healing process occurred. However, as of the 20 century it was
replaced by psychosurgery and drug therapy. The most recent case of
trepanation was present in 1970 by Amanda Feilding, a young woman in the
Bart Hugus Amsterdam experiment, in which she engaged trepanation as a
method of hallucination.
- Edwin Smith surgical papyrus:
- Humoral theory:
- Ventricular localization:
- Andreas Vesalius:
How the term is defined by the course. The significance of the course (how we’re
talking about the issue in the class. Not simply the definition, but you need to have
an understanding of what the term means, and what it means for the central of the
Bad Example: Cathode rays: - corpuscles or parts of atoms called electrons
- joseph John Thomson
Sample Good Answer:
Cathode rays are stream of electrons that were discovered through research on
electrical conduction through gases. When the cathode of a Crookes tube is heated it
emits electrons. The electrons induce a glow from the walls of the tube.
Significance: William Rontgen wrapped a tube in cardboard to block the path of
cathode rats, and found a new form of radiation that passed through the cardboard,
which he called X-rays He proposed the new rats that were a new form of light and
won the Nobel Prize for his discovery.
- Theme of our look at the history of neurology - Structures which look different should have different functions
- Applied to smaller and smaller parts
- Begins with the whole brain – how is the brain different from other organs, if
at all? What is its function?
- Are there different parts of the brain? How do they function differently? How
can we find out if we don’t know?
- Scientists started mapping out the brain through different methods:
- Developing a brain that has specialized functions
- We have to see anatomy as a relevant; we need to realize anatomy is
important. We have trouble with this when keep old ideas. Scientists want to
The very beginning of the head
- Australopithecus africanus. Hominids lived 2.9-2.3 million years ago.
Raymond Dart (1893-1988) speculates that cranial structure of antelope
humerus bone. Baboon skulls at fossil suit show cranial damage. Shows
awareness about the importance of the head.
- Neanderthal skull: 36,000-year-old skull found in France in 1979. Computer-
aided reconstruction shows head injury. Position of wound suggests it was
deliberate – a blow from the front or behind.
- Found first in Neolithic skulls (10,000 to 6,000 BCE). It shows a special
importance attributed to the head. The holes drilled in the skull were to
relieve pressure on the brain: after injury, because of mental illness, perhaps
to alter consciousness. Perhaps shows recognition or importance of the
heads a spiritual significance: the disc of the bone was sometimes worn as an
- European cultures, prehistoric sites. They were taken off using sharp stones,
shells, and primitive drills. Common in Peru: 10,000 Pre-Columbian (before
the 1532 Spanish conquest) skulls found, some over 2000 years old: there
multiple holes, special instruments used, 63% survival rate. (How do we
know? They healed)
- This was done as an indication of strong belief about the brain. It allows the
release of evil spirits. Treatments: depressed skull fractures, insanity,
depression, and headaches. Perhaps special mental powers conferred
(however all ages and classes represented). Replaced by psychosurgery and
drug therapy in years after 1930.
- In 1970 a young woman, Amanda Fielding filmed herself trepanating herself
with a dentist drill. Bart Hugus in Amsterdam if they believe a hole in their
skulls, they can have a permanent high. She got a second trepanation.
Ancient Cultures - Question: How do we know what ancient cultures thought about the brain
and its function?
o Tombs: medical texts on papyrus.
o Art: paintings, murals
o Oral tradition
o Tools that people used
- Edwin Smith Surgical Papyrus: Purchased in Egypt during 1862 (Luxor).
Translated in 1930 by James Breasted. Likely written in 1600 BCE. It was
likely a copy of an older text 2780-2200 BCE (old kingdom). Describes
- Scholars feel there were three contributors:
o Imhotep: Father of medicine. Third Dynasty – high courtier to King
Djozer. Also an architect – designed pyramid at Sakkara. Was deified:
temples built to him in Memphis.
o A commentator
o Lecturer, student, or a professional scribe. 1650 BCE, copy of original
hieroglyphics into cursive form
- Ebers Papyrus discovered in Thebes, purchased 1873 by George Ebers. It has
over 900 prescriptions.
- Head injury described in the Smith papyrus. Associated with coordination
problems. Treatment described. Ebers discussed treatments. The heart is the
center of intelligence and consciousness, more important than the brain. For
wellness, 36 channels need to be open. The heart and other inner organs
were preserved by mummification for the afterlife.
Thales of Miletus (590 BCE)
- First recorded description of the fundamental substratum of the world.
Everything is made of water. External appearance can be different from
internal reality. Search for hidden causes in nature.
Pythagoras of Samos (580 BCE)
- Contemporary of Thales. Learned math and astronomy in Egypt. Set up
school (secret religious community) in the Croton colony, Sicily. Investigated
mathematical rations. We get four elements: earth air water and fire. More
primitive elements underneath these four.
Empedocles of Agrigentum (4