Deans' stroke musings

Changing stroke rehab and research worldwide now.Time is Brain!Just think of all the trillions and trillions of neurons that DIE each day because there are NO effective hyperacute therapies besides tPA(only 12% effective). I have 493 posts on hyperacute therapy, enough for researchers to spend decades proving them out. These are my personal ideas and blog on stroke rehabilitation and stroke research. Do not attempt any of these without checking with your medical provider. Unless you join me in agitating, when you need these therapies they won't be there.

What this blog is for:

Shortly after getting out of the hospital and getting NO information on the process or protocols of stroke rehabilitation and recovery I started searching on the internet and found that no other survivor received useful information. This is an attempt to cover all stroke rehabilitation information that should be readily available to survivors so they can talk with informed knowledge to their medical staff. It's quite disgusting that this information is not available from every stroke association and doctors group.
My back ground story is here:

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Mitten challenges

Now that is is getting colder out I have to start wearing a mitten on my affected hand, gloves are impossible. It is quite the challenge to get the spastic thumb into the thumb slot. I never had any ADL training on donning gloves or mittens.  I was in Minnesota at the time so it would seem quite important even though my stroke was in May. 

Residents in Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead to face trips to different hospitals after stroke unit shuts at Slough's Wexham Park

It becomes even  more important now for your doctors and hospitals to prevent all the neuronal cascade of death in the first week from these 5 causes. Without solving this problem you as a stroke patient are going to be really screwed. Even worse I bet your doctors and hospitals won't even know about or acknowledge that neuronal cascade of death. That is pure incompetency. Ask them why they are so fucking incompetent.
PEOPLE who suffer a stroke in Windsor or Slough will face longer journeys to hospital following the closure of an emergency-response unit.
The acute stroke unit at Wexham Park Hospital in Slough is shutting its doors at the end of 2016, meaning anyone who suffers a stroke in the area faces a longer journey to either High Wycombe or Chertsey from January 1 2017.
The East Berkshire clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) say the changes will result in better care(not results?) as Wycombe General Hospital and St Peter’s Hospital in Chertsey have enhanced hyper acute stroke units, a step up on the level of care possible at standard units, and offer better chances of recovery. (Who give a fuck about better chances? What are your recovery results? tPA full efficacy? 30day deaths? 100% recovery? )
Wexham Park will now only take responsibility for stroke rehabilitation, with a new unit going live from January 1.
But the changes have raised questions over journey times for residents in Slough and Windsor.
Councillor Lynne Jones (Ind, Old Windsor) also of the Old Windsor Residents’ Association, said: “Maidenhead to Wycombe is fine, but Windsor to Wycombe is another matter completely. I’m not sure the closure is such a good idea.
“It would have been better if Wexham Park had been enhanced.”
Wycombe Hospital is situated just over 18 miles away from central Windsor if you take the fastest route, and St Peter’s in Chertsey is more than 10 miles away, whereas Wexham Park is 5.5 miles away from the centre of Windsor and just two miles away from central Slough.
Patients in Maidenhead however will face a similar journey length to Wycombe as the current one to Wexham Park.
Andy Giles, 69, from Holyport, suffered a stroke on December 11, 2013, and was taken to Wexham Park for emergency care.
He said: “The care at Wexham Park has gone from strength to strength, I hope the move is not going to be detrimental to any victim but I think it is a case of short-term loss and long-term gain.”
Cllr David Coppinger, (Con, Bray) said: “Evidence in London has shown that taking someone to a centre of excellence is far better than going to a local hospital.”
Fiona Slevin-Brown, Director of Strategy and Operations for the East Berkshire CCGs, said: “Ambulances can reach our nearest hyper acute stroke units within the ‘golden hour’, which is the hour immediately following the onset of stroke symptoms. Stroke patients have a much greater chance of surviving and avoiding long-term disabilities if they arrive at a specialist hyper acute stroke unit and receive treatment within that first hour.”

Friday, December 30, 2016

Neuroscience says these five rituals will help your brain stay in peak condition

Since you are losing 5 years of brain age due to your stroke, your doctor better have some protocols to catch back up. But don't worry, nothing like that will occur, you will need to research your own cognitive training. Good luck with that.

brain injury patients were estimated to be around five years older on average than their real age
Thanks to improvements in medicine, more of us are living longer. That makes we have a heightened investment in making sure our brains stay in shape as we age, too. While an increased life expectancy will not necessarily lead to a higher incidence of cognitive disorders, Alzheimer’s alone is expected to affect over seven million American seniors by 2025.
Lucky for us, advanced technologies have enabled researchers to understand how the brain works, what it responds to, and even how to retrain it. For instance, we know our brains prefer foods with high levels of antioxidants, including blueberries, kale, and nuts. We know that a Mediterranean diet, which is largely plant-based and rich in whole grain, fish, fruits, and red wine, can lead to higher brain functions. And we know that smiling can retrain our brains to look for positive possibilities rather than negative ones.
Whether you’re 25 or 65, consider adopting these five simple rituals that cognitive scientists say can help your brain grow new cells, form new neural pathways, improve cognition, and keep your outlook positive and sharp.

Congratulate yourself for small wins

The frequency of success matters more than the size of success, so don’t wait until the big wins to congratulate yourself, says B.J. Fogg, director of the Persuasive Tech Lab at Stanford University. Instead, come up with daily celebrations for yourself; your brain doesn’t know the difference between progress and perceived progress.
Both progress and setbacks are said to greatly influence our emotions. So the earlier in the day you can feel successful, the better—feelings of excitement help fuel behaviors that will set you up for successes. For instance, a productive morning routine can be used to motivate you through the rest of the day. We feel happier and encouraged as our energy levels increase, and feel anxiety or even depression as our energy levels go down.

Keep your body active

According to neurologist Etienne van der Walt, keeping active is one of the best ways to improve brain health. As he told Quartz earlier this year, “Specific forms of exercises have been shown to be very beneficial for … brain growth.”
Simply speaking, when we exercise, our heart rate increases, oxygen is pumped to the brain at a much faster rate, and new brain cells develop more quickly. The more brain cells we create, the easier it is for cells to communicate with one another, developing new neural pathways. Ultimately, our brains become more efficient and plastic, which means better cognitive performance.
A 2014 study from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign found that children who regularly exercised had higher “attentional inhibition,” defined by The New York Times as “the ability to block out irrelevant information and concentrate on the task at hand.” The Times article also noted that study participants ended the with “heightened abilities to toggle between cognitive tasks.” It doesn’t even take that much sweat to keep your brain in good shape.  
It doesn’t even take that much sweat to keep your brain in good shape. A study conducted by the department of exercise science at the University of Georgia in 2003 found that an exercise bout of just 20 minutes is enough to change the brain’s information processing and memory functions.
Bottom line: however you decide to keep active, just keep moving.

Stretch your brain muscles

Like other muscles in your body, if you don’t use the brain, you’ll eventually lose it. This means it’s crucial to exercise your brain and keep it stimulated.
Tara Swart, a senior lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, notes that it’s especially important to target areas of your brain that you use less frequently. Good suggestions for stretching your brain muscles include learning to speak a new language, learning to play a new instrument, or even learning to juggle.
To enhance his own cognitive prowess, author James Altucher tries to come up with new ideas every day. He writes about his daily system:
Take a waiter’s pad. Go to a local cafe. Maybe read an inspirational book for 10 to 20 minutes. Then start writing down ideas. The key here is, write 10 ideas … a waiter’s pad is too small to write a whole novel or even a paragraph. In fact, it’s specifically made to make a list. And that’s all you want, a list of ideas.
Mid-way through the exercise, Altucher says his brain will actually start to “hurt.” Whether he ends up using the ideas or throwing them away is not the point. But it is important to vary your routine. Harvard psychologist Shelley H. Carson, author of Your Creative Brain, also believes that mixing things up and even allowing yourself to become distracted can be an important cognitive tool.

Sit upright

Mothers everywhere were really onto something when they instructed their children to sit up straight. Not only is an upright position found to increase energy levels and enhance our overall mood, it’s also been shown to increase our confidence, as in this 2013 preliminary research conducted by Harvard Business professor Amy Cuddy and her colleague, Maarten W. Bos.
 Positioning yourself in a powerless, crouched position can make your brain more predisposed towards hopelessness. In the study, the researchers found that people who sit in collapsed positions—usually adopted to look at small wireless devices like smartphones and tablets—were less likely to stand up for themselves. Participants with bad posture were also the slowest to ask if they could leave when the experiment had been declared over. On the other hand, participants who were randomly assigned larger devices, like laptops and desktops, were more likely to sit upright and be assertive in asking if they could leave.
From a purely cognitive perspective, positioning yourself in a powerless, crouched position can make your brain more predisposed towards hopelessness, as well as more likely to recall depressive memories and thoughts. Researchers say this phenomenon is ingrained in our biology and traces back to how body language is “closely tied to dominance across the animal kingdom,” as Cuddy writes in her new book, Presence.
So what’s the best way to ensure you feel powerful in both body and mind? Erik Peper, a professor who studies psychophysiology at San Francisco State University, advises checking your posture every hour to make sure you’re not in the iHunch, or iPosture, position. He also advises bringing smaller devices up to your face while in use instead of forcing yourself to look downward at them in a collapsed position.

Sleep with your phone away from your head

There’s a lot of myths and half truths out there about how—and if—your smartphone may be affecting the brain. While there is still a lot of research that needs to be done on the topic of wireless devices, there does seem to be a link between blue light—emitted by electronic screens including those of smartphones—and sleep. Interrupting or changing our sleep patterns is bad for a lot of reasons. For example, lack of enough deep sleep could be preventing us from flushing harmful beta-amyloid from our brains.
According to Swart, a senior lecturer at MIT specializing in sleep and the brain, our brains’ natural cleansing system requires six to eight hours of sleep. Without it, brains eventually encounter major build-ups of beta-amyloid, a neurotoxin found in clumps in the brains of people with neurological disorders like dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
While scientists have always known that the brain cleanses wastes, much like the body, the sophistication of this cleansing system was investigated in 2013 by Maiken Nedergaard of the Center for Translational Neuromedicine at the University of Rochester. This study found “hidden caves” that open up in our brains when we’re in a deep enough sleep. This liquid cleaning system, dubbed the “glymphatic system,” enables copious amounts of neurotoxins to be pushed through the spinal column.
So, exactly how far away do you need to keep your smart devices? We’re not completely sure, but Swart says it’s a good idea to not sleep with it next to your head. Ultimately, keeping our brains healthy takes willpower and resilience, just like with any other part of our bodies. But as research shows, staying sound of body and mind as we age is certainly possible—with a little effort.
Correction: A previous version of this piece cited research regarding the effects of Wi-Fi on sleep patterns that was inconclusive. It has been updated with research regarding the effects of blue light on sleep patterns.

One-handed map challenges

I'm going to Spain for two weeks in March, 5 days in Madrid, 9 days traveling the country by car, possibly take a ferry and stay the night in Tangiers. So I bought a Marco Polo Spain/Portugal map.  It folds out and folds out even more, keeping it flat on my desk in the office is almost impossible one handed. It is going to be a real challenge to use in the car. And if I have to look at the backside of the map because we go to the left side of Spain I'm going to rip it into pieces. Another missed ADL training from my therapists.  I will get international data roaming so I can use GPS on my phone, That is compensation which I swore I would never do.

The pioneering stem cell procedure that can restore movement after a stroke

Nothing here gives me any sense of hope that stem cells work. They have NO fucking clue if the stem cells even survived and migrated to the correct locations. 

1. Nothing on the objective damage in the brain.  

2. No mention of even measuring if the stem cells survived


3. Nothing listed here proves cause and effect. 

4. No mention of measuring the blood vessels that were supposedly created

5. Nothing on what exercises were done to get these new cells to take on the needed functions. 

6. No mention if the new stem cells migrated to the correct place.

7. Did they objectively measure anything at all in this procedure?

 20 million cells is nothing, he likely lost hundreds of millions.

 I really do wonder if our researchers even know how to run research.
I could make just  as strong a case that the the real cause of the improvement was the trepanation. 

One day in August last year I was reaching for food in the fridge, when I suddenly fell unconscious. I don’t know how long I was out for and I thought I had just tripped over.
Afterwards I felt a bit dizzy so I went for a lie down until my wife Catherine came home about an hour or two later.

I told her I fell and didn’t feel very well, but neither of us were particularly worried as all I had to show for my dizzy spell was a small scratch on my elbow. I had no idea that the fall was a stroke.
The next morning I made myself a cup of coffee, but when I tried to take a sip, it spilt as I couldn’t co-ordinate my hand to my mouth properly.
Catherine realised something wasn’t right so rang our daughter, Sonja, who took me to A&E. I swiftly deteriorated and by the time I got there an hour later, the left side of my mouth drooped and I couldn’t use my left arm. I wasn’t too concerned, but I wasn’t thinking clearly.
The doctors recognised instantly that I was having a stroke, and I was rushed in for a brain scan.
This showed that a blood clot was blocking blood flow to my brain and as a result various areas were permanently damaged, including the areas that govern movement and speech.
I was virtually paralysed down my left side, had no power in my left arm, and my speech was slurred.

The doctors said the fall was actually a stroke and as so much time had elapsed — about 24 hours between me having it and getting to hospital — there was little they could do.
I spent three days in hospital resting and slowly I started to realise just how much my life would have to change.
I spent 13 weeks in a rehabilitation centre having intense speech therapy and physiotherapy, but I just couldn’t regain any movement in my left arm or leg and my speech was still slurred. Things I’d taken for granted such as walking were now beyond me.
Back home I could no longer work and I had to rely on Catherine for most things — and had pretty much given up on ever regaining movement in my left side.
Then out of the blue in June, my neurologist rang to ask if I’d like to take part in a new trial for stem-cell therapy that would be the first ever treatment for damage caused by a stroke, I was immediately keen.
He explained that the treatment involved an injection of stem cells from a tissue bank and these would help regenerate the damaged brain areas and could restore movement. I was slightly worried about the idea of a needle going straight into my brain, but the doctors reassured me it was safe.

I went in for the two-hour surgery under general anaesthetic in September. Unsurprisingly, I don’t remember much about it, but I was well enough to go home the next day. Over the next few weeks I started physiotherapy and finally began to feel a change.
Before, I’d had no control over my left arm — it just dangled by my side with my fist clenched and it would sometimes shake uncontrollably — but now I can lift it above my chest. My friends have told me my speech is clearer, too. But my walking is still unsteady.
Before the treatment I had felt self-conscious, but the stem-cell therapy has given me a lifeline and I’m hopeful that I’ll get even better with more physio.
Professor Keith Muir is a consultant neurologist at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow.
Every year more than 150,000 people in the UK have a stroke and half of these are left with some kind of disability because blood supply to key areas is blocked.
Around 85 per cent of cases are ischaemic strokes, where the blood supply is stopped due to a clot. The others are known as haemorrhagic, where a weakened blood vessel supplying the brain bursts.
If the supply of blood is restricted or stopped, brain cells begin to die, resulting in permanent brain damage and disability as nerve cells don’t regrow.
Often if caught early, ischaemic strokes can be treated with medication to dissolve the blood clot and restore blood supply to the affected areas.
But these drugs have to be given within four hours of a stroke occurring in order to be effective as brain tissue doesn’t survive very long without a blood supply.

If this happens and the brain cells are killed off, there is little that doctors can do. Patients are left with irreversible disability as there are no treatments to help brain cells grow again. These patients are offered physiotherapy and rehabilitation, which can be of limited effectiveness.
But now scientists from Glasgow University and Reneuron, a biotechnology company based in Wales, are testing whether stem cells injected into the brain of patients after a stroke can stimulate regeneration of brain cells and blood vessels in order to restore some function.
These stem cells, called CTX, are derived from a brain tissue sample donated to a tissue bank in the U.S. and transported to the hospital.
Animal studies suggest that they can stimulate some of the brain’s natural repair systems and so recover some lost function.
Before the operation a ‘dose’ of around 20 million stem cells is unfrozen in the hospital pharmacy and drawn up into a syringe.
Under general anaesthetic a neurosurgeon drills a small hole about 1cm wide in the skull.
 We slowly inject a dose of 20 million CTX stem cells into the brain, which can take up to two hours, as the syringe is only gradually pushed down so that the cells drip into the brain precisely. Patients are usually ready to leave the hospital the next day.
 Prof Keith Muir
We use brain scans taken before the procedure to see where the damage is and guide the injection, aiming to place the stem cells in an intact area of brain close to where the stroke damage has occurred.
The cells can’t be injected into the damaged area since there’s no tissue there for them to hold on, and they would be washed away by the fluid circulating in the brain. However, animal studies show that when they are injected into nearby healthy brain tissue, the stem cells move to the site of damage.
We think that a chemical signal comes from damaged tissue that tells the cells to move there. As the cells move into the injured areas they are thought to release chemicals which stimulate the growth of nerve cells and new blood vessels.
We slowly inject a dose of 20 million CTX stem cells into the brain, which can take up to two hours, as the syringe is only gradually pushed down so that the cells drip into the brain precisely.
After the procedure, the hole in the skull is filled with a bone substitute material, similar to Polyfilla, and the scalp stitched.
Patients are usually ready to leave the hospital the next day.
A safety study published in the Lancet in June involving 11 stroke patients suggested there were no side-effects related to the cells over a two-year follow up.
Our current study at eight NHS centres has finished recruiting 21 patients, and so far results suggest significant improvement in patients’ disability scores.
We are awaiting full results from this study before we plan larger trials in more patients. 


- A small chance of infection.
- As with any brain surgery, bleeding in the brain is a possibility.
- Seizures are occasionally seen after injections to the brain (estimated in around 2 per cent of cases).
- There have not been any side-effects related to the injected cells so far but long-term follow-up has only been done in a few people.
Dr Steve Allder, a consultant neurologist in Plymouth, says: ‘I would be amazed, given what we are learning about the brain’s capacity to recover and how to use stem cells, if they didn’t help stroke patients improve paralysis.
‘There will be some false starts, but I’m confident stem cells will significantly help stroke patients.’
No mention of this risk.

Stem cell propagation fuels cancer risk in different organs 

Thursday, December 29, 2016

10 Reasons to Be Hopeful About the Future of Alzheimer’s Disease

I see zero hopefulness about the future of stroke. I can't point to ANYTHING AT ALL that our fucking failures of stroke associations have done in 2016 that has helped stroke survivors get any closer to 100% recovery.  This is where those presidents could chime in and prove me wrong, but they won't.

10 Reasons to Be Hopeful About the Future of Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease and good news? Somehow these two terms don’t fit.
After all, more than five million Americans are afflicted with Alzheimer's disease, the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., which kills more of us than breast and prostate cancer combined. Some experts estimate that as many as 16 million could be afflicted by 2050.
In 2016 alone, Alzheimer’s and other related dementias have cost America an estimated $236 billion. While that figure is staggering, the real cost to families and caregivers is immeasurable.

As we face a new year of fighting Alzheimer’s, the reality is that so much about this disease is still unknown and there are more questions than answers. What drives disease progression? What treatments are most effective? How can we help afflicted families?
After looking into 2016 research findings, initiatives and information on treatment and prevention, I was heartened by what I found. Before we say farewell to 2016, let’s stop and look for hope on the horizon, not to make us complacent but to keep the positive momentum going forward.
Here are 10 reasons why I am feeling more hopeful about the future of Alzheimer’s.

1. Awareness grew in 2016

2. Dementia rates dropped

3. More progress on the tau-amyloid connection

4. Fighting chronic inflammation may be a key prevention tool

5. New Alzheimer’s marker offers hope for treatment

6. Joint Alzheimer’s-Parkinson’s research could mean new treatments for both conditions

7. Existing glaucoma and high cholesterol drugs may lower Alzheimer’s risk

8. 5 major clinical trials aimed at Alzheimer’s prevention

9. One South American country could offer clues for future prevention

10. Federal funding for research highest in history

More details at link.

How Loneliness Affects Your Brain

You will likely need to actively work to prevent this post-stroke Your doctor should have stroke protocols to increase your social connections.  Unless s/he has gone the the correct route and  solved these 5 causes of the neuronal cascade of death.
Thus correctly getting to the root cause of the problem - neuronal death, rather than having to solve the secondary effects like loss of social contacts.  You likely will lose the first two categories that Aristotle mentions.

Aristotle believes that there are three different kinds of friendship; that of utility, friendship of pleasure, and virtuous friendship. 

The loneliness problem:

How Loneliness Affects Your Brain 

Lonely people quickly move to the edges of social networks — here’s why.
Loneliness makes the areas of the brain that are vigilant for threat more active, a new study finds.
This can make people who are socially isolated more abrasive and defensive — it’s a form of self-preservation.
This may be why lonely people can get marginalised.
Professor John Cacioppo, an expert on loneliness, speaking about an earlier study on the marginalisation of the lonely, said:
“We detected an extraordinary pattern of contagion that leads people to be moved to the edge of the social network when they become lonely.
On the periphery people have fewer friends, yet their loneliness leads them to losing the few ties they have left.
These reinforcing effects mean that our social fabric can fray at the edges, like a yarn that comes loose at the end of a crocheted sweater.”
The new research, conducted by Professor Cacioppo and colleagues, compared the brains of lonely and non-lonely people.
Both were hooked up to an EEG machine to measure the electrical activity around the brain.
They were shown a series of words, varying in how social and positive they were.
The brains of lonely people were quicker to spot words related to social threat — such as ‘hostile’ — than non-lonely people.
In fact, lonely people were more on the look-out for words with negative connotations in general.
This could be an ancient defence mechanism to help us survive, the authors argue:
“Fish on the edge of the group are more likely to be attacked by predators, not because they are the slowest or weakest, but because of the ease of isolating and preying upon those on the
social perimeter.
As a result, fish have evolved to swim to the middle of the group when a predator attacks.”
Behind this is an evolutionary theory, they say:
“Being on the social perimeter is not only sad, it is dangerous.
Our evolutionary model of the effects of perceived social isolation (loneliness) on the brain as well as a growing body of behavioral research suggests that loneliness promotes short-term self-preservation, including an increased implicit vigilance for social, in contrast to nonsocial, threats.”
The study was published in the journal Cortex (Balogh et al., 2015).

The late effects of stress: New insights into how the brain responds to trauma

My stroke was probably the most stressful event in my life. What protocol needs to be created to stop these damaging stress effects from the stroke? It looks like we might have days to treat this so possibly no need to get this done in the first hours. But never mind, NOTHING will get done on this because we have NO strategy to update and NO leadership to execute that strategy.
Mrs. M would never forget that day. She was walking along a busy road next to the vegetable market when two goons zipped past on a bike. One man's hand shot out and grabbed the chain around her neck. The next instant, she had stumbled to her knees, and was dragged along in the wake of the bike. Thankfully, the chain snapped, and she got away with a mildly bruised neck. Though dazed by the incident, Mrs. M was fine until a week after the incident.
Then, the nightmares began.
She would struggle and yell and fight in her sleep every night with phantom chain snatchers. Every bout left her charged with anger and often left her depressed. The episodes continued for several months until they finally stopped. How could a single stressful event have such extended consequences?
A new study by Indian scientists has gained insights into how a single instance of severe stress can lead to delayed and long-term psychological trauma. The work pinpoints key molecular and physiological processes that could be driving changes in brain architecture.
The team, led by Sumantra Chattarji from the National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS, India) and the Institute for Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine (inStem), Bangalore, India, has shown that a single stressful incident can lead to increased electrical activity in the brain's amygdala. This activity sets in late, occurring ten days after a single stressful episode, and is dependent on a molecule known as the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDA-R), an ion channel protein on nerve cells known to be crucial for memory functions.
The amygdala, a small, almond-shaped groups of nerve cells, is located deep within the temporal lobe of the brain where it is known to play key roles in emotional reactions, memory and making decisions. Changes in the amygdala are linked to the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a mental condition that develops in a delayed fashion after a harrowing experience.
Previously, Chattarji's group had shown that a single instance of acute stress had no immediate effects on the amygdala of rats. But ten days later, these animals began to show increased anxiety, and delayed changes in the architecture of their brains, especially the amygdala. "We showed that our study system is applicable to PTSD. This delayed effect after a single episode of stress was reminiscent of what happens in PTSD patients," says Chattarji. "We know that the amygdala is hyperactive in PTSD patients. But no one knows as of now, what is going on in there," he adds.
Investigations revealed major changes in the microscopic structure of the nerve cells in the amygdala. Stress seems to have caused the formation of new synapse connections in this region of the brain. However, until now, the physiological effects of these new connections were unknown.

Rhythm of Breathing Affects Memory and Fear

You are in constant danger all the time  mainly from that dangerous activity called walking. Ask your doctor to describe the breathing stroke protocol you have. Does it include this Kundalini breathing technique?

Creation of nitric oxide via Breath of Fire

Summary: A new study reports the rhythm of your breathing can influence neural activity that enhances memory recall and emotional judgement.
Source: Northwestern University.
Breathing is not just for oxygen; it’s now linked to brain function and behavior.
Northwestern Medicine scientists have discovered for the first time that the rhythm of breathing creates electrical activity in the human brain that enhances emotional judgments and memory recall.
These effects on behavior depend critically on whether you inhale or exhale and whether you breathe through the nose or mouth.
In the study, individuals were able to identify a fearful face more quickly if they encountered the face when breathing in compared to breathing out. Individuals also were more likely to remember an object if they encountered it on the inhaled breath than the exhaled one. The effect disappeared if breathing was through the mouth.
“One of the major findings in this study is that there is a dramatic difference in brain activity in the amygdala and hippocampus during inhalation compared with exhalation,” said lead author Christina Zelano, assistant professor of neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “When you breathe in, we discovered you are stimulating neurons in the olfactory cortex, amygdala and hippocampus, all across the limbic system.”
The study was published Dec. 6 in the Journal of Neuroscience.
The senior author is Jay Gottfried, professor of neurology at Feinberg.
Northwestern scientists first discovered these differences in brain activity while studying seven patients with epilepsy who were scheduled for brain surgery. A week prior to surgery, a surgeon implanted electrodes into the patients’ brains in order to identify the origin of their seizures. This allowed scientists to acquire electro-physiological data directly from their brains. The recorded electrical signals showed brain activity fluctuated with breathing. The activity occurs in brain areas where emotions, memory and smells are processed.
This discovery led scientists to ask whether cognitive functions typically associated with these brain areas — in particular fear processing and memory — could also be affected by breathing.

The amygdala is strongly linked to emotional processing, in particular fear-related emotions. So scientists asked about 60 subjects to make rapid decisions on emotional expressions in the lab environment while recording their breathing. Presented with pictures of faces showing expressions of either fear or surprise, the subjects had to indicate, as quickly as they could, which emotion each face was expressing.
When faces were encountered during inhalation, subjects recognized them as fearful more quickly than when faces were encountered during exhalation. This was not true for faces expressing surprise. These effects diminished when subjects performed the same task while breathing through their mouths. Thus the effect was specific to fearful stimuli during nasal breathing only.
In an experiment aimed at assessing memory function — tied to the hippocampus — the same subjects were shown pictures of objects on a computer screen and told to remember them. Later, they were asked to recall those objects. Researchers found that recall was better if the images were encountered during inhalation.
The findings imply that rapid breathing may confer an advantage when someone is in a dangerous situation, Zelano said.

Killing old cells to stay young

Does this also need to occur in the brain? Ask your doctor if Cliff Clavin in Cheers was correct about

The Buffalo Theory of neurons?

Killing old cells to stay young

Removing worn-out cells might delay the buildup of artery-clogging plaques.

Pricey plastic surgery won't stop you from getting old. Nor will dietary supplements, testosterone injections, or those wrinkle creams that imply they'll make you look 21 again. But this year, researchers demonstrated one way to postpone some ravages of time—at least in mice. When they selectively weeded out rundown cells, the animals lived longer and remained healthier as they aged.
The infirm cells the scientists targeted had undergone a partial shutdown known as senescence, in which they lose the ability to divide. Researchers think senescence may prevent worn-out, cancer-prone cells from initiating tumors, but it may also promote aging. As we grow older, more and more cells stop reproducing, potentially robbing our tissues of the ability to replace dead or injured cells. Senescent cells also discharge molecules that can cause problems such as abnormal cell growth and inflammation.
The first study showing that eliminating senescent cells can produce health and longevity benefits, at least in middle-aged mice, came out in February. Deterioration of the animals' hearts and kidneys slowed, and they didn't sprout tumors until later in their lives. Some age-related declines, such as in memory and muscle coordination, didn't abate. Nonetheless, the rodents outlived their contemporaries by more than 20%.
In October, the same research team took aim at senescent cells from the immune system that amass in artery-clogging plaques and may drive their formation. Removing these cells from mice that are prone to atherosclerosis reduced the amount of fatty buildup in the animals' arteries by 60%, even though the rodents gorged on fat-laden food.
The multibillion-dollar question: Will taking out senescent cells help humans stay young longer? Both studies used genetically modified mice that clear away their senescent cells in response to a particular compound—a technique that isn't feasible in humans. But researchers have created several so-called senolytic drugs that slay senescent cells without genetic tinkering. Next year, scientists will launch the first clinical trial of one of those drugs in people who have arthritis. –Mitch Leslie


D. J. Baker et al., “Clearance of p16Ink4a-positive senescent cells delays ageing-associated disorders,” Nature 479, 232 (2 November 2016)
D. J. Baker et al., “Naturally occurring p16Ink4a-positive cells shorten healthy lifespan,,” Nature 530, 184 (11 February 2016)
B. G. Childs et al., “Senescent intimal foam cells are deleterious at all stages of atherosclerosis,” News from Science 354, 472 (28 October 2016)

Simple Fix for Vertigo (Video with Instructions)

I know some survivors who have complained about vertigo. This obviously can't be done on your own until 50 years from now when your doctor finally finds out about it and prescribes it.
A doctor at the University of Colorado Hospital has become a YouTube sensation. That’s because she has developed a simple maneuver to treat vertigo at home.
CBS4 Health Specialist Kathy Walsh first explained the treatment in a story in 2012. Since then, it’s gotten 2.6 million views on

Recovery From Brain Injury, Better Sleep Go Hand in Hand

Assuming the same for stroke, what is your doctors sleep protocol for you? Do sleeping pills provide the same type of sleep needed?
Recovery From Brain Injury, Better Sleep Go Hand in Hand
After a traumatic brain injury (TBI), people also experience major sleep problems, including changes in their sleep-wake cycle. A study published in the journal Neurology shows that recovering from these conditions occurs in parallel.
“These results suggest that monitoring a person's sleep-wake cycle may be a useful tool for assessing their recovery after TBI,” said Nadia Gosselin, PhD, University of Montréal, Montréal, Québec. “We found that when someone sustained a brain injury and had not recovered a certain level of consciousness to keep them awake and aware of their surroundings, they were not able to generate a good sleep-wake cycle. But as they recovered, their quality of sleep improved.”
A good sleep-wake cycle was defined as being alert and active during the day and getting uninterrupted sleep at night.
The study involved 30 people aged 17 to 58 years who had been hospitalised for moderate to severe TBI. Most of the patients were in a coma when they were admitted to the hospital and all initially received care in an intensive care unit. The injuries were caused by motor vehicle accidents for 20 people, falls for 7 people, recreational or sports injuries for 2 people, and a blow to the head for 1 person. They were hospitalised for an average of 45 days with monitoring for the study beginning an average of 21 days into a person's stay.
Each person was monitored daily for an average of 11 days for level of consciousness and thinking abilities using the Rancho Los Amigos scale, which ranges from 1 to 8. Each person also wore an activity monitor on their wrist so researchers could measure their sleep.
Researchers found that consciousness and thinking abilities improved hand-in-hand with measures of quality of sleep, showing a linear relationship.
One measure, the daytime activity ratio, shows percentage of activity that occurs during the day. Immediately after the injury, activity occurs throughout the day and night. The study showed that participants reached an acceptable sleep-wake cycle, with a daytime activity ratio of at least 80%, at the same point when they emerged from a minimally conscious state.
The participants still had inadequate sleep-wake cycles at a score of 5 on the Rancho Los Amigos scale, where people are confused and give inappropriate responses to stimuli but are able to follow simple commands. Sleep-wake cycles reached adequate levels at the same time that people reached a score of 6 on the Rancho Los Amigos scale, which is when people can give appropriate responses while still depending on outside input for direction. At that level, they can remember relearned tasks, but cannot remember new tasks.
The results were the same when researchers adjusted for the amount of time that had passed since the injury and the amount of medications they had received while they were in the ICU.
“It’s possible that there are common underlying brain mechanisms involved in both recovery from TBI and improvement in sleep,” said Dr. Gosselin. “Still, more study needs to be done and future research may want to examine how hospital lighting and noise also affect quality of sleep for those with TBI.”
SOURCE: American Academy of Neurology

Risk for MI, Stroke Is Vastly Underestimated in Patients With HIV

Be careful out there.
Current methods to predict the risk of myocardial infarction (MI) and stroke vastly underestimate the risk in individuals with HIV, which is nearly double that of the general population, according to a study published online by JAMA Cardiology.
“The actual risk of heart attack for people with HIV was roughly 50% higher than predicted by the risk calculator many physicians use for the general population,” said Matthew Feinstein, MD, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, Illinois.
The higher risk for MI -- about 1.5 to 2 times greater -- exists even in people whose virus is undetectable in their blood because of antiretroviral drugs.
Accurately predicting an individual’s risk helps determine whether he or she should take medications such as statins to reduce the risk of MI or stroke.
“If you have a higher risk for heart attack or stroke, your ability to benefit from one of these drugs is greater and justifies the possible side effects of a medication,” said Dr Feinstein said.
A new predictive algorithm may need to be developed to determine the actual risk for MI and stroke in people with HIV, he noted.
The study was conducted using a large, multi-centre clinical cohort of HIV-positive individuals receiving care at 1 of 5 participating sites around the country. The researchers analysed data from approximately 20,000 HIV-positive individuals. They compared predicted rates of MIs based on data from the general population to the actual rates of MIs observed in this cohort.
The primary driver of the higher risk is the HIV, scientists believe.
“There is chronic inflammation and viral replication even in people whose blood tests don't show any sign of the virus in the blood,” explained Dr. Feinstein.
That's because the virus still lurks in the body's tissues, creating the inflammation that causes plaque build-up that can lead to a MI or a stroke. This build-up occurs 10 to 15 years earlier in patients with HIV than in people without HIV.
“It's this inflammatory state that seems to drive this accelerated aging and these higher risks for heart disease, which are becoming more common in HIV patients as they live longer,” said Dr. Feinstein.
The current study builds on previous HIV-related heart disease research by Feinstein, published in November, 2016, which found that individuals with HIV had more scarring in the heart muscle after MIs, indicating an impaired ability to heal their hearts. Reasons for this are unknown but are an area of active study for Feinstein and his colleagues.
A clinical trial is underway at Northwestern Medicine to evaluate how well common medications for heart disease prevention and treatment, such as statin medications, work to prevent heart disease in the HIV-infected population.
SOURCE: Northwestern University

Rate of Death and MI After Non-Cardiac Surgery Decreases, But Risk of Stroke Increases

If you need this type of surgery ask your doctor how they are reducing these post operative events.
Rate of Death and MI After Non-Cardiac Surgery Decreases, But Risk of Stroke Increases
Cardiovascular complications after non-cardiac surgery remain a major source of morbidity and mortality, according to a study published online by JAMA Cardiology.
Despite the significant burden perioperative events place on the national healthcare system, recent data are lacking on trends in perioperative major adverse cardiovascular and cerebrovascular events (MACCE) among patients hospitalised for major non-cardiac surgery.
Using the National Inpatient Sample, Sripal Bangalore, MD, New York University School of Medicine, New York, New York, and colleagues identified patients who underwent major non-cardiac surgery from January 2004 to December 2013.
Among 10,581,621 hospitalisations (mean age, 66 years; 57% female) for major non-cardiac surgery, perioperative MACCE -- defined as in-hospital, all-cause death, acute myocardial infarction (MI) or acute ischaemic stroke -- occurred in 317,479 hospitalisations (3%), corresponding to an annual incidence of approximately 150,000 events.
MACCE occurred most frequently in patients undergoing vascular (7.7%), thoracic (6.5%), and transplant surgery (6.3%).
Between 2004 and 2013, the frequency of MACCE declined from 3.1% to 2.6%, driven by a decline in frequency of perioperative death and acute MI, but there was an increase in perioperative ischaemic stroke from 0.52% in 2004 to 0.77% in 2013.
Men had higher risk of perioperative MACCE than women. In analyses of perioperative events by race and ethnicity, non-Latino black patients had the highest rates of perioperative death and ischaemic stroke compared with other racial groups.
Perioperative MACCE occurs in 1 of every 33 hospitalisations for non-cardiac surgery,” the authors wrote. “Despite improvements in perioperative outcomes over the past decade, the significant increase in the rate of ischaemic stroke in this analysis requires confirmation and further study. Additional efforts are necessary to improve perioperative cardiovascular care of patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery.”
SOURCE: JAMA Cardiology

Evaluation of patient satisfaction after stroke rehabilitation program. Validation study for the Spanish version of the Satisfaction Pound Scale

I bet this is totally bogus because the staff is influencing the answers. They are saying you recovered well, not even acknowledging that 100% recovery was the goal. And meeting that goal for the hospital is a complete failure.
Evaluación de la satisfacción con el programa de rehabilitación tras el ictus: validación de la versión española de la Pound Satisfaction Scale
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Neurogenesis as an organizing function of the adult brain: Is there enough evidence?

I sure hopes it exists, it is the only way I will get complete recovery. I don't expect stem cells to be useful in the rest of my life - 36 years. I bet  your doctor has not read a single one of these 90 references.  Which is why you don't have a neurogenesis protocol. Your doctor should know the answer to the three highlighted questions.
  1. 1.Orekhovich Institute of Biomedical ChemistryMoscowRussia
DOI: 10.1134/S2079086416060013
Cite this article as:
Gomazkov, O.A. Biol Bull Rev (2016) 6: 457. doi:10.1134/S2079086416060013


A half century of studying the neurogenesis of the adult brain has produced much evidence for an endogenous conversion of neural stem cells. Yet the idea receives increasing criticism, in addition to the many positive comments. Does neurogenesis proceed at a rate sufficiently high for its functional significance? Are new cells capable of integrating into proper brain regions in order to perform a reparative role? How long do new neurons persist in the integration sites, and how significant is their role in the neuronal circuit structure? An organizing function is hypothesized for endogenous adult brain neurogenesis on the basis of current information. One of the main arguments for the hypothesis is the multiplicity of key physiological processes functionally associated with the involvement of new neurons and glial cells: learning, memory, adaptive behavior, protective stress responses, reproductive function, changes in the state of mind, injuries, ischemic and neurodegenerative disorders, etc. The adjustable reprogramming of neuronal precursors and the reparative role of new cells are analyzed. The organizing role of neurogenesis is considered a justified complex process that is important for the function of the adult brain.


adult neurogenesishippocampusdentate gyrusneurorepairadaptive function