10/26/16

What’s it all about

Welcome!

It’s About So Much More Than Brain Surgery.

It’s About Life.
We’ve even got videos.

Neurosurgery101Twitter

Neurosurgery 101—TheBlog is about life and some of its harder or more interesting moments. If you have ever wondered how a craniotomy is done, or how hydrocephalus is treated, or what surgeons listen to in the OR (they listen to stuff?!)—you’ll find this blog interesting. It’s for the lay person, the medically-minded person, or anybody with just a little bit of interest in the goings on of the body human, or the human body in disease. It’s about what happens when things go wrong and how we—those of us in medicine—pick up the pieces. When I talk about this stuff, it’s nonfiction. It’s a case of truth is stranger than fiction.

But it’s more than that too. Sometimes I post reviews. These might be about books, like Peter Clines awesome sci fi techno thriller The Fold.  Other times my reviews are about personal experiences, like my unfortunate several days with The Flu in 2012.  Sometimes I answer questions people ask me, like What is a pinched nerve? or Can a person break their neck without becoming paralyzed?

And of course, there’s the fiction. I love fiction and read constantly. You’ll never find me without a book in hand—unless I’ve got a pen for writing. Fiction, both reading and writing, is my #1 passion. You’ll find lots of cool fiction here. 

What you won’t find here is medical advice. I am not practicing medicine online. I also won’t be talking about specific patients. Not even close. Privacy is the law of the land and I believe strongly in it, especially when it comes to one’s health.

Some things I may cover in the not too distant future, or that you might just find cool right now:

What is a pinched nerve and how do you ‘unpinch’ it?

Why does my back hurt so much? Check out this awesome 11 minute video on back pain.

What is sciatica?

When is back pain treated with surgery?

What is a lumbar fusion and how is it done…

How do you open a living skull?

What is hydrocephalus?

What is a concussion?

Can you really operate on the brain with a patient awake?

Can a person break their neck and not be paralyzed?

Is there suppose to be fluid draining out of my back after surgery?

Well, you get the idea. There’s a super amount of information here, some fiction and some nonfiction. I talk a lot about my books and stories too. The interested writer can get a pretty good feel for where I get my ideas and how my stories evolved. For everyone else though, it’s just damn interesting. So come back often and don’t forget to sign-up for updates.

And if you like the writing here, you’re gonna love my many novels, novellas, and short stories. Hop on over to Amazon for a look at my fiction RIGHT NOW. Or read about the stories using the menu at the top of the page. I would suggest you start with THE WRITING.

BooksHeader

CWHeaderNEUROSURGERY101— TheBlog. Life on the edge of a scalpel. For those who have ever wondered what goes on behind the closed doors of the operating room, or the innards of the human body.

NEUROSURGERY 101— TheBlog. Because, outside of a dog, books are a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog…well, that’s what this blog is gonna find out.

NEUROSURGERY101— TheBlog. Because nobody gets out of life alive.

 

06/26/15

Six Word Stories

Welcome!

This is a place for those who cherish life.
And love fiction.
We’ve even got videos.

Neurosurgery 101—TheBlog is about life and some of its harder or more interesting moments. If you have ever wondered how a craniotomy is done, or how hydrocephalus is treated, or what surgeons listen to in the OR (they listen to stuff?!)—you’ll find this blog interesting. It’s for the lay person, the medically-minded person, or anybody with just a little bit of interest in the goings on of the body human, or the human body in disease. It’s about what happens when things go wrong and how we—those of us in medicine—pick up the pieces. When I talk about this stuff, it’s nonfiction. It’s a case of truth is stranger than fiction.

But it’s more than that too. Sometimes I post reviews. These might be about books, like Peter Clines awesome sci fi techno thriller The Fold.  Other times my reviews are about personal experiences, like my unfortunate several days with The Flu in 2012.  Sometimes I answer questions people ask me, like What is a pinched nerve? or Can a person break their neck without becoming paralyzed?

And of course, there’s the fiction. I love fiction and read constantly. You’ll never find me without a book in hand—unless I’ve got a pen for writing. Fiction, both reading and writing, is my #1 passion. You’ll find lots of cool fiction here. 

Neurosurgery101Twitter

What you won’t find here medical advice. I am not practicing medicine online. I also won’t be talking about specific patients. Privacy is the law of the land and I believe strongly in it, especially when it comes to one’s health.

Some things I may cover in the not too distant future, or that you might just find cool right now:

What is a pinched nerve and how do you ‘unpinch’ it?

Why does my back hurt so much? Check out this awesome 11 minute video on back pain.

What is sciatica?

When is back pain treated with surgery?

What is a lumbar fusion and how is it done…

How do you open a living skull?

What is hydrocephalus?

What is a concussion?

Can you really operate on the brain with a patient awake?

Can a person break their neck and not be paralyzed?

Is there suppose to be fluid draining out of my back after surgery?

Well, you get the idea. There’s a super amount of information here, some fiction and some nonfiction. I talk a lot about my books and stories too. The interested writer can get a pretty good feel for where I get my ideas and how my stories evolved. For everyone else though, it’s just damn interesting. So come back often and don’t forget to sign-up for updates.

And if you like the writing here, you’re gonna love my many novels, novellas, and short stories. Hop on over to Amazon for a look at my fiction RIGHT NOWOr read about the stories using the menu at the top of the page. I would suggest you start with THE WRITING.

BooksHeader

CWHeaderNEUROSURGERY101—The Blog. Life on the edge of a scalpel. For those who have ever wondered what goes on behind the closed doors of the operating room, or the innards of the human body.

NEUROSURGERY 101—TheBlog. Because, outside of a dog, books are a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog…well, that’s what this blog is gonna find out.

NEUROSURGERY101—The Blog. Because nobody gets out of life alive.

 
04/13/13

Saving King

Killing King

The time is the 4th of April 1968, a cool Spring evening close on six pm. The place is a predominantly black neighborhood on the south edge of downtown Memphis, Tennessee. An area of run-down homes and low incomes. At 450 Mulberry Street there sits a small, modestly upscale boarding establishment, the Lorraine Motel. It is two stories and there is a pool, installed by the motel’s long time owner, Mr. Walter Bailey. The motel is popular among black musicians who frequent the nearby Stax Records. Over the years these have included Ray Charles, Lionel Hampton, Aretha Franklin, Ethel Waters, and Otis Redding before his death the year before.

Across the street and beyond a small brushy knoll is a two-story brick rooming house. 422 Main Street. On the second floor of this shoddy establishment, at the window of a small bathroom, a man named James Earl Ray waits with a 30.06 rifle. Ray has a clear view of the Lorraine Motel, of room 306 on the second floor.

It is one minute after six in the evening and, in the time it takes a bullet to fly the length of the knoll, everything changes.

Martin Luther King, 39 years old, has already survived one assassination attempt. Ten years earlier, on September 20th, 1958, a deranged black woman with the bewitched name of Izola Curr plunged a steel letter opener into his chest—his sternum actually—while he was holding a book signing at a Harlem bookstore. Three hours of emergency surgery at Harlem Hospital saved his life. The blade missed his aorta by a hair’s breath.

He will not be nearly so lucky this time…

 

In all of American history, surely one of the most atrocious acts of gun violence took place on the evening of April 4, 1968. No less a personage than George Wallace, the avowed segregationist, called the shot that rang out at 6:01 pm in Memphis, Tennessee “a senseless, regrettable act.” President Lyndon Johnson canceled an important trip to Hawaii—he had been scheduled to meet with his military commanders about strategy in Vietnam—upon learning of King’s death.

Over 100 American cities erupted into rioting on the news of what this single gunshot wrought: the stilling of the greatest single voice in the American civil rights movement, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

These facts are well known and not in dispute: King was shot at 6:01 pm and was pronounced dead at 7:05 pm at St. Joseph’s Hospital after a failed attempt at open cardiac massage. He was 39 years old.

According to King biographer Taylor Branch (At Canaan’s Edge: America in the King Years, 1965-68), King was standing on the balcony outside room 306 on the second floor of the Lorraine Motel when Jesse Jackson hollered up to him: “Doc, you remember Ben Branch?” King replied “Oh yes, he’s my man.” King then said, “Ben, make sure you play ‘Precious Lord, Take My Hand,’ in the meeting tonight. Play it real pretty.”

Ben Branch replied “Okay, Doc, I will.”

There was no reply.

King had spoken his last words, and in the words of biographer Taylor Branch, time on the balcony had turned lethal and King’s sojourn on earth went blank.

But did it? Did it do so immediately? Was King doomed the moment that bullet crashed through him? Is there any action that might have saved his life as he lay supine on that balcony. Bleeding profusely from a wound to his right jaw and neck? He wasn’t pronounced dead for 64 minutes. Was he, in fact, alive during that time? Was there ever a chance he could have been saved by the relatively crude trauma care of 1968? And how about today? If King was shot in 2013, might he survive?

The answers to these questions and more are interesting and worth pursueing. They illustrate, if nothing more, how far trauma care has come in the forty-five years since that fateful night. Based on a close reading of eyewitness reports, the autopsy filing, the 1978 House Select Committee on Assassinations’ investigation into the assassination of Martin Luther King, and other sources, I have put together a creative but nonfictitious account of the efforts to save Dr. King’s life in the 64 minutes that followed his shooting.

This is an intense, no holds barred look at what transpired in 1968, and an equally intense account of what might occur under similar circumstances today. If you have any interest in medicine, surgery, the drama of the emergency room, or trauma in general, you won’t want to miss this.

SAVING KING is about one of life’s harder moments. Available now for the Amazon Kindle. Just 99¢ & you can touch a piece of history.

Killing King

Click on the book image to buy for 99¢ for the Amazon Kindle

Now that’s damn interesting!

03/13/13

The Definition of Neurosurgery

The Definition of Neurosurgery
as defined by the American Board of Neurological Surgery

NSurgery Definition