Overlooking Down Syndrome

Dazee is frustrated because we have not included any discussion of Down Syndrome at this site, even while autism and other forms of severe disability are frequent topics of consideration. There are several reasons for our neglect. First, the principal contributor to this blog has no experience with these kids. He hasn’t studied them (or…

Jacksonville is moving UP!

Jacksonville, Florida is making an unprecedented attempt to move up in the world. How can a large American city accomplish that? There is one slow-but-certain way: Improve the brain potential of, and the possibilities for achievement for EVERY child. How on earth could an entire city begin to achieve THAT? Led by a great Superintendent…

How to get PTSD. Twice. Worse.

I just read disturbing comments by a highly respected University of California doc Karen Seal [who screens and treats returning veterans from Iraq or Afghanistan at San Francisco’s famous Ft. Miley Veterans Administration Hospital, one of our premier VA Research Hospitals] about the redeployment of young soldiers treated for PTSD and other neurological and psychatric…

West Nile virus is also on the list

In Caldwell, Idaho, on the Snake River in Western Idaho, Dr. Carolyn Rees tells us that she was at ground zero during a West Nile Virus epidemic “leaving many people with post-encephalitic brain damage”. A review of the research literature on WNV includes a number of studies now documenting enduring memory and other cognitive losses…

One million children

Sometime over the next days, the millionth child willl enroll in a Fast ForWord language or reading program. For Paula, Bill, Steve, Bob, Glenn …………. and the thousands of other good people who have helped make, sell, manage, train, support, HELP those million children — THANK YOU! One of the nicest things that can happen…

Understanding other brains

Alan Towers wrote an instructive, poignant comment about the difficulty that he had understanding that his schizophrenic son could not be EXPECTED to “make sense”, if sense was defined by the standards that applied for Alan, or for the wider society. Because so many people who live with psychotic illness or substantial neurological impairment require…

Jack’s hippocampus is bigger than yours

My dog Jack, thinking, has a proportionally larger hippocampus than you do. If I had a pet bunny, its hippocampus would be (proportionally) larger, still!! You’ve probably heard a lot about the crucial role that the hippocampus plays in recording our “episodic” (historic, serial, ‘long-term’) memories. Does this mean that we should revise that age…

Ultrasound and autism

A former UCSF medical student, Carolyn Rees, now a doc in rural Idaho, wrote me a very informative letter — and raised several interesting questions — that are definitely worth a little discussion here. Dr. Rees asked: Is there any evidence that ultrasound examination can affect brain development? In fact, that evidence is mixed. Over…