It is not uncommon for stroke patients to suffer brain damage, but the case of one patient was peculiar. This patient was, by his own account, completely blind. Two consecutive strokes had destroyed the visual cortex of his brain, and consequently, his ability to see. His first stroke had injured only one hemisphere of his visual cortex. About five weeks later, a second stroke damaged the other hemisphere. An assessment of his brain function revealed that after two strokes, the patient, who was in his 50s, was clinically blind.
Known as selective bilateral occipital damage, this patients’s unusual injury made him the subject of much interest while recovering at a hospital in Geneva. Researchers began examining him and discovered that despite his blindness, he had maintained the ability to detect emotion on a person’s face. He responded appropriately— with emotions such as joy, fear, and anger— to a variety of facial expressions. Observed activity in his amygdala— the part of the brain responsible for processing emotions— confirmed the curious results.
His rare condition is known as blindsight. Because his stroke damaged only his visual cortex, his eyes remain functional and as a result can still gather information from his environment. He simply lacks the visual cortex to process and interpret it. Sight has changed from a conscious to a largely subconscious experience. He no longer has a definitive picture of his surroundings, but he has retained an innate awareness of his position in the world. He is, to some degree, able to see without being aware that he is seeing.
holy shit this is interesting
NATURE YOU CRAZY COOL
Reality is always weirder and infinitely more awesome than fiction, apparently.
i really want to just walk into the shower fully clothed and turn it on and get soaked and sit on the floor and cry like they do in films it looks fulfilling
Still patiently waiting for an episode where Sam and Dean switch bodies