Sunday, May 20, 2012

Neurosurgeon

I had an interesting experience this week that I have not yet had in my life. I challenged a question that a neurosurgeon wrote on our neuroscience final and the challenge was denied. I've never challenged a question before because I never felt so definitively right about something.

The question asked about the significance of the pinprick test and there were two correct answers:

a.) rectal tone and perianal sensation indicate sacral sparing.
b.) it demonstrates an intact spinothalamic pathway.

The other 3 responses were obviously wrong and I don't remember them. Pinpricks test whether the tract (spinothalamic) that carry pain signals to brain is intact. Since there are more components to sacral sparing than the two listed in response a I chose answer b which was the 'wrong' right answer because he stressed 'a' more during class.


Challenge denied.

Morals of the story are:

The difference between a neurosurgeon and God is that God doesn't think He's a neurosurgeon.
It only takes one neurosurgeon to screw in a lightbulb. He holds it and the world revolves around him.

PS You gotta wonder about the first person to think of testing 'rectal tone' in spinal cord damage cases.

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