Christmas and Neuroscience

So I typed in “Christmas and Neuroscience” into Pubmed and got 7 results. Some interesting like “A case of selective impairment of encyclopaedic numerical knowledge or ‘when December 25th is no longer Christmas day, but ’20+5′ is still 25,’ as well as a study looking at episodic memories and episodic future thinking. Both interesting but not as cool as the one that I want to give you a couple more thoughts about.

I found something entitled “Christmas tree sign,” and here I thought it might be a cool article about a person that when he sees Christmas tree outlines, he automatically does something or has specific sensations. But this wasn’t the case with this Pubmed finding. This was referring to back pain and sciatica in patients with neurofibromatosis which may result from a multitude of pathological processes including scoliosis, degenerative diseases of the spine, and spinal
tumours.
This showed a recently treated patient with multiple neurofibromas which involved several nerve roots and the cauda equine. The extensive distribution of the tumours produced an MRI picture resembling a Christmas tree. In patients with “the Christmas tree sign” the challenge is in the correct diagnosis of those tumors which produce the symptoms if surgery is to remain a realistic management option.

I guess this doesn’t leave a very Christmasy feeling in our hearts.. but this will:

http://www.cafepress.com/+neuroscience+stocking

They have Christmas stockings expressing love for neuroscience!

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4 thoughts on “Christmas and Neuroscience

  1. A) I agree – great entry! B) Even though I don’t celebrate Christmas, I want those stockings! C) This is so interesting. I guess I have to question why those tumors form in the pattern of a christmas tree? Does it have to do with blood circulation in the brain? or does it have to do with the way projections connect with different regions? This is really interesting!

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