Yesterday The Fussy Librarian and BookGorilla had an offer for a book written by a person who wrote about their brain aneurysm experience. I read the chapters posted on Amazon. Then I read the reviews. One reviewer recommended My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey. Jill Bolte Taylor, Ph.D. is the author.
The first person I knew who had a brain injury was my nephew. He was 18 months old and while in a diabetic coma sustained brain damage. The second person was a woman I worked with who had a brain aneurysm. Members of my family have been diagnosed with dementia. Whether it is an unexpected injury or the gradual loss of function with dementia, brain injury does change the person. Their family and friends are altered by the injury as well.
Last night I started reading Jill Bolte Taylor’s book, My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey. In the introduction she stated,
Within four brief hours, through the eyes of a curious brain anatomist (neuroanatomist), I watched my mind completely deteriorate in its ability to process information. By the end of that morning, I could not walk, talk, read, write, or recall any of my life.
That scares the hell out of me. The thought that people can be aware, but not to be able to do anything about it.
Scientists are researching how brain injuries occur, how to reduce the effects of the injuries, how to treat the injuries, and perhaps even how to prevent them. Brain donation, as part of organ donation, gives scientists the material they need to conduct their research.
In an interview with Jill Bolte Taylor, she was quoted as saying that when one becomes an organ donor the brain is not included. Special arrangements need to be made. The Harvard Brain Tissue Resource Center was mentioned in the interview.
There is a list of brain and tissue banks available on the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke website.
Two members of my family donated their brains for research–one was for dementia, the other was for restless legs syndrome.