1/2 a brain is better than a whole brain

My moms best friend’s niece has a severe case of epilepsy. She is a twenty year old whose quality of life is ruined by her disease. She has seizures almost every day. She cannot drive, she cannot go anywhere by her self and she is constantly injuring her self from falling and seizing. My mom told me that she is getting a procedure done to cure her condition. Turns out this procedure is where they remove part of her brain. This was shocking to me. This is barbaric! How can removing part of your brain help you? You need your brain, and now they’re just going to remove part of it? I could not fathom how removing part of your brain could be beneficial. But it turns out it can be beneficial. Since the surgery, a month ago she has been seizure free.

I decided to investigate. I found a very intriguing article about a baby who have severe epilepsy and a doctor in California removed half of his brain! A baby boy, just under a year old had his brain removed. Although this sounds so crazy and irrational the decision actually makes sense. The baby’s condition was so bad that he would seize for almost half of the day. No medicines were working and there was nothing that could stop the seizing. Seizing at such a young age so severely will damage a lot of the brain. The baby would never learn to speak or walk with a condition like this. So the baby’s doctors determined which part of the brain was not functioning properly and removed the damaged part before the healthy brain would be affected. The baby’s parents claimed that potentially being blind, or potentially having a limp is a risk they are willing to take considering the very concerning state that the baby is in right now. They thought could it be any worse? The baby lived through the surgery and so far, 2 months after the procedure, the baby is doing well. He is speaking and walking and acts just like a regular healthy, seizure-free baby.

The doctor has preformed this procedure on more than 230 babies. Only one baby died during surgery. The rest all seem to be cured. Some have side affects but all are in a better state than they were previously. The doctor claims that at such a young age the brain has the ability to rewire its self and to do the tasks that the removed part of the brain was used for.

Its unsure what the future hold for the baby with half a brain. But so far he is doing a lot better. Read the full article here

So apparently your brain isn’t so important. And half of it can be removed with no immediate apparent results. Theres that myth that a person only uses 10% of your brain and the rest of it is idol. But upon doing more research on that topic I came across this very interested Ted video. This video says that previously we did not know what a lot of the brain is used for but now we do. These are things like problem solving, creativity, adaptability. So perhaps these babies can walk and talk but they will have other problems in the future that you cannot tell as a baby. The future for these babies is a complete mystery. Theres no way to measure how much creativity a 11 month year old baby has lost. The future for these babies is a mystery. But certain is a miracle you can live with half a brain, and removing a brain can be beneficial.

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/baby-half-brain-removed-treat-seizures/story?id=12503272&page=2

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/02/04/ted-ed-percentage-brain-richard-cytowic_n_4719173.html

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