June 14, 2024

The strange case of a young man who was born without a brain but had an IQ of 126

2 min read
The strange case of a young man who was born without a brain but had an IQ of 126

In the 1980s, John Lorber devoted his studies to neuroscience and sought explanations for some phenomena. In this case, hydrocephalus was part of his scientific interests. This plaque refers to the accumulation of water in the head and is more common among children and the elderly. However, a case reported by a young undergraduate student has chronicled the history of neurological research.

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Is your brain really necessary?

Neurologist John Lorber published an article “Is Your Brain Really Necessary” after an analysis was conducted in his lab. The question that began with the question “Is your mind really necessary?” led to discussions.

He asked this question precisely because he was examining the young man who had complained about the size of his head. Indeed, the skull seemed exaggeratedly swollen, indicating a case of hydrocephalus on examinations.

Brainless and intelligent young college student

Although cases involving adults are rare, this could have happened. However, there is something that does not seem to have an explanation: his remarkable ability to handle numbers, in his career as a mathematician.

His IQ (intelligence quotient) was 126 and professors recognized his performance at the University of Sheffield. Without brain mass, how could he have developed such intelligence?

On imaging tests, the young man’s brain was filled with “water,” or cerebrospinal fluid. In this sense, masses intensify in certain situations and do not necessarily stop developing.

What are the main effects of hydrocephalus?

The main damage that hydrocephalus can cause is related to cognitive development. Internal pressure also causes pain and brain damage, endangering the patient’s life.

When the problem is diagnosed in childhood, the chances of a cure are few, but there is a cure. This is because the formation of the nervous system stops at the beginning of development.

Dr. Lorber didn’t have much time to finish his thoughts on the relationship between brain mass and intelligence. Nevertheless, his studies were essential to the advancement of modern neuroscience.

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