Aphantasia: imagine not being able to imagine

Unless you are on another planet where the BBC doesn’t reach, you must have heard of this new buzzword. The BBC feature titled a life without mental images, made interesting listening. And Adam Zeman was as clear as always in his description of the phenomenon called aphantasia. Imagine being unable to imagine?

Lennon Imagine. wdr3 on Flikr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/wdr3/1045283154
Lennon Imagine. wdr3 on Flikr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/wdr3/1045283154

I however recommend Adam’s blog on this condition-a masterpiece! If on the other hand you prefer a harder take on it, then read his paper in Cortex (if you can break through Elsevier’s gauntlet).

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The blend sign

This recent paper in the journal Stroke introduces the blend sign as a very good predictor of haematoma growth after intracerebral haemorrhage (ICH). It is seen on early un-enhanced CT head scans as a blending of hypoattenuating area and hyperattenuating region with a well-defined margin. 

By OpenStax College - Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions Web site. http://cnx.org/content/col11496/1.6/, Jun 19, 2013., CC BY 3.0, Link
By OpenStax College – Anatomy & Physiology, Connexions Web site. http://cnx.org/content/col11496/1.6/, Jun 19, 2013., CC BY 3.0, Link

Above is what an intracerebral haemorrhage looks lie on brain imaging. For the blend sign itself, click here. It makes for a very nice buzzword, but see what you make of it. If you are not impressed, then let the blend mean only one thing!

The art of making coffee. Lukas.b0 on Flikr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/lukas_photo/22741658824
The art of making coffee. Lukas.b0 on Flikr. https://www.flickr.com/photos/lukas_photo/22741658824

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C David Marsden: now on Wikipedia!

At last my effort has paid off-the great man is now firmly in Wikipedia. It was a hard slog, having to learn the unique Wikipedia formatting rules and open editing process. It was however a gratifying experience.

You can follow this link: C David Marsden or indeed ‘google’ him

With this out of the way I can now start blogging through my list of top 100 Neurologists, one at a time. In case you missed it, here is a link to my main blog on Neurology greats

 

 

Top all-time neurology review articles

Well-researched reviews make the unwieldy number of research articles, and the rapid accumulation of knowledge, manageable. For this reason I set out to make a list of the most useful neurology review articles.

To do this I searched the database of references I compiled in the process of creating a neurology checklists app called neurochecklists. My search revealed more than 300 review articles, winnowed down eventually to the 150 most useful neurology review articles. Not an easy undertaking as this list had to cover the diverse range of neurological diseases, procedures, and interventions.

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150 is a rather large number, and for a blog, an impossible one. I therefore went ahead to see if I could pin down what I think are the Top 50 neurology review articles. Here is the alphabetical list (disease, authors, and year), with links to their Pubmed abstracts.

Top 50 Neurology Review Articles

  1. Arteriovenous malformations (AVMs), Choi and Mohr, 2005
  2. Autoimmune encephalopathy, Vincent et al, 2011
  3. CADASIL, Adib-Samii et al, 2010
  4. Cerebral Amyloid Angiopathy (CAA), Rannikmae et al, 2013
  5. Cerebral aneurysms, Clarke, 2008
  6. Cerebral microbleeds, Cordonnier et al, 2007
  7. Cervical Artery Dissection (CAD), Debette and Markus, 2009
  8. Charcot Marie Tooth disease (CMT), Pareyson and Marchesi, 2009
  9. Clinically Isolated Syndrome (CIS), Miller et al, 2012
  10. Cramps, Katzberg et al, 2010
  11. Dementia in the young, Rossor et al, 2010
  12. Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), Bushby et al, 2010
  13. First seizure, Krumholz et al, 2007
  14. Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD), Seelar et al, 2011
  15. Guillain Barre Syndrome (GBS), van Doorn et al, 2008
  16. Hereditary Spastic Paraparesis (HSP), Salinas et al, 2008
  17. Huntington’s Disease (HD), Novak and Tabrizi, 2010
  18. HyperCKaemia, Morandi et al, 2012
  19. Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension (IIH), Biosse et al, 2012
  20. Lambert Eaton Myasthenic Syndrome (LEMS), Gilhus, 2011
  21. Lyme neuroborreliosis, Halperin et al, 2007
  22. Meningitis, Bhimraj, 2012
  23. Motor Neurone Disease (MND), Miller et al, 2009
  24. Movement disorders emergencies, Munhoz et al, 2012
  25. Multiple Sclerosis (MS) treatment, Castro-Borrero et al, 2012
  26. Myasthenia Gravis (MG), Jayam Trouth et al, 2012
  27. Myasthenia Gravis (MG) myasthenic crisis, Wendell and Levine, 2011
  28. Myotonic Dystrophy, Turner and Hilton-Jones, 2014
  29. Narcolepsy, Leschziner, 2014
  30. Neuromyelitis Optica (NMO), Palace et al, 2012
  31. Neurosarcoidosis, Joseph and Scolding, 2009
  32. Parkinson’s Disease (PD), Massano and Bhatia, 2012
  33. Paroxysmal dyskinesias, Erro et al, 2014
  34. Periodic Paralysis (primary), Finsterer, 2008
  35. Posterior Reversible Encephalopathy Syndrome (PRES), Roth and Ferbert, 2011
  36. Postural Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS), Carew et al, 2009
  37. Primary angiitis of the CNS, Hajj-Ali, 2011
  38. Primary CNS Lymphoma, Schlegel, 2009
  39. Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis (PPMS), Rice et al, 2013
  40. 40. Progressive Multifocal Leukoencephalopathy (PML), Hunt and Giovannoni, 2012
  41. REM sleep Behaviour Disorder (RBD), Boeve, 2010
  42. Reversible Cerebral Vasoconstriction Syndrome (RCVS), Sattar et al, 2010
  43. Stroke in the young, Larrue et al, 2011
  44. Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy (SUDEP), So et al, 2009
  45. Syncope, Weiling et al, 2009
  46. Thunderclap headache (TCH), Ducros, 2013
  47. Transient Epileptic Amnesia (TEA), Zeman and Butler, 2010
  48. Venous Sinus Thrombosis (VST), Piazza, 2012
  49. Viral encephalitis, Solomon et al, 2007
  50. Wilson’s disease, Bandmann et al, 2015

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Here is the full list of my top 150 review articles.

Why not explore neurology further with neurochecklists?

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Are these the all-time most influential Neurologists?

Who are the most influential neurologists in history? Not an easy task as the starting field is rather wide. Creating a ‘top list‘ of anything is potentially controversial because there are often no clear inclusion criteria, and justifications are often subjective.

 

"Alois Alzheimer 003" by uncredited - http://neurophilosophy.wordpress.com/2006/11/03/100-years-of-alzheimers-disease/. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Alois_Alzheimer_003.jpg#/media/File:Alois_Alzheimer_003.jpg
“Alois Alzheimer 003” by uncredited – http://neurophilosophy.wordpress.com/2006/11/03/100-years-of-alzheimers-disease/. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Alois_Alzheimer_003.jpg#/media/File:Alois_Alzheimer_003.jpg

 

I was initially swayed by the length of Wikipedia entries but cautioned myself when I noticed that the piece on Raymond Adams was very brief. Furthermore, there was no entry at all for C David Marsden! Sacrilege, I thought. I felt strongly enough about this that I registered as a Wikipedia editor, and now there is a Wikipedia page for David Marsden.

By Joaquín Sorolla (1863 - 1923) ([1]) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Santiago Ramon y Cajal by Joaquín Sorolla (1863 – 1923) ([1]) [Public domain or Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Fame and celebrity are also significant influences on ‘top lists’. The debate that followed Gerald Stern‘s article, the world’s best known neurologist, shows the justifiable importance of fame, but I tried hard to discount ‘mere’ celebrity. By the way, Stern’s lecture on this subject is worth viewing.

Eponymous syndromes also tug at the heart, and I discovered that there is a book titled Neurological Eponyms. I have not read it, so I am unbiased in this regard. It is however difficult to avoid the influence of JMS Pearce who seems to have written on every neurology great!

To compose a credible list, I thought a set of criteria was essential and I guided myself with these:

  • Volume, significance, and variety of contribution to neurology
  • Influence on clinical practice
  • Longevity of contribution
  • Breaking new grounds
  • Influence on other Neurology greats
  • Receipt of a Nobel prize
  • Lasting legacy in terms of books 
Jean Marie Charcot by André Brouillet (see below) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Jean Marie Charcot by André Brouillet (see below) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I have been liberal with the term ‘neurologist’ in the context of making this list. I have considered any specialist who has made a significant contribution to neurological knowledge and practice (how else would Alois Alzheimer get on the list?) Did I forget to mention-each name on the list is not living!

George Huntington (c. 1908)
George Huntington (c. 1908)

 

Here then is my list of The Top 30 Most Influential Neurologists with links to their Wikipedia entries:

  1. Raymond ADAMS
  2. Alois ALZHEIMER
  3. Joseph BABINSKI
  4. Charles BELL
  5. Paul BROCA
  6. Santiago Ramón y CAJAL
  7. Jean-Martin CHARCOT
  8. Macdonald CRITCHLEY
  9. Guillaume DUCHENNE
  10. Charles Miller FISHER
  11. Nikolaus FRIEDREICH
  12. Norman GESCHWIND
  13. William Richard GOWERS
  14. Anita HARDING
  15. Gordon Morgan HOLMES
  16. George HUNTINGTON
  17. John Hughlings JACKSON
  18. Gheorghe MARINESCU
  19. Rita LEVI-MONTALCINI
  20. Pierre MARIE
  21. C David MARSDEN
  22. H Houston MERRITT
  23. Antonio Egas MONIZ
  24. James PARKINSON
  25. Arnold PICK
  26. Heinrich Irenaeus QUINCKE
  27. Charles Scott SHERRINGTON
  28. Charles Putnam SYMONDS
  29. Thomas WILLIS
  30. Samuel Alexander Kinnier WILSON

 

"An unidentified man" by Unknown - http://www.tecnologiahechapalabra.com/img_noticias/@old/%7B6E28BB2F-B004-4354-865D-F275131FBEB2%7D_James_Parkinson.jpg. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:An_unidentified_man.jpg#/media/File:An_unidentified_man.jpg
“An unidentified man” by Unknown – http://www.tecnologiahechapalabra.com/img_noticias/@old/%7B6E28BB2F-B004-4354-865D-F275131FBEB2%7D_James_Parkinson.jpg. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:An_unidentified_man.jpg#/media/File:An_unidentified_man.jpg

 

There are however too many influential neurologists, and to do justice to more of them, here is The Neurology Lounge Top 100 Neurology Greats.

If you think there is a name that is not on this list, and you strongly feel that it should be, please let me know (but you must suggest which name on the list should be replaced!) And by the way, do you have a photo of C David Marsden for his Wikipedia entry?

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The most helpful and practical neurology guidelines

 

 

The Neurology Lounge will be incomplete without guidelines-what can we do without them? To come up with a list I took the easy path and searched a database of neurology checklists I am working on for an app. Guess how many guidelines there are? I found 120! 120 guidelines neurologists should know about! This surprised me. As the lounge doesn’t have a bookshelf large enough to accommodate them all, I scaled the number down to my most important 30.

Here then are my top 30 neurology guidelines-all linked.

The list is on the blogs sidebar for easy reference.

Do you agree with my top 30? Do you have any suggestions or updates? Feel free to comment.

Here is a pdf of my top 120 Neurology guidelines.

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