Thursday, August 08, 2019

Brain Scan

I've been very much enjoying the current threads on this blog about fun with computers, especially Barbara's entry yesterday about the most complex computer of all, our brains. This is especially timely for me, since I had an MRI on my head this past Monday. I mentioned in my last entry that I'm losing my hearing. I have been asking people to repeat themselves for years, and I've asked many a doctor about the fact that I really can't hear anything out of my left ear. The response has typically been a big shrug since there is not an obvious mechanical problem, like wax. It has reached a point where I either have to have a hearing aid or learn sign language, so I finally went to see a specialist. Thus the MRI to make sure there's no tumor.

I've have MRIs before and found them highly unpleasant (claustrophobic), so the doctor gave me a prescription for a nice horse tranquilizer. It worked very well. I barely remember parts of the procedure, which is good because they clamped a cage-like thing over my face and slid me into the tube and if I hadn't been tranquilized I would have broken their machine clawing my way out.

I went back to the clinic to get a copy of the report yesterday. (My husband and I always get copies of our medical reports and spend a few days brushing up on our medical terminology before we follow up with the doctor. We've learned the hard way not to rely solely on the doctor's interpretation of things.) Long story short there's nothing too alarming going on in my brain. However, the very first sentence did disturb me.

“Mild cerebral and cerebellar cortical volume loss, compatible with the patient's age.”

So, Barbara, dear, you have struck a nerve. My computer is getting old. The signals are not as quick and snappy as they used to be. But I keep finding ways to work around its glitches and will keep trying until the signals flicker and die out all together. Will my writing suffer from my cortical volume loss? I suppose someone will have to tell me, for how else will I know?

Oh, and I'm going to be fitted for a hearing aid next week.

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