Seizures can impair memory and thinking

With Epilepsy Treatment, The Goal Is To Keep Kids Seizure-Free
June 10, 2013

frequent or prolonged seizures can eventually cause problems with memory and thinking.

seizures “can actually change the way language centers in the brain develop.”

low-carbohydrate diets, including the high-fat ketogenic diet

Then there are new implanted devices that send electrical signals to the vagus nerve

to provide parents and other caregivers with an emergency kit that lets them administer a fast-acting drug to stop a seizure.

“Epilepsy surgery is underutilized in this country,”

For about 30 percent of children with epilepsy, none of the existing treatments is adequate.

transplanting a type of cell that reduces excessive electrical activity in the brain. “Stem Cell therapy may be one way that we can very specifically target the region of the brain that is overexcited and quiet that area of the brain.”

Another experimental approach involves devices that monitor the brain for abnormal activity.
Some are able to predict when the brain activity is headed toward a seizure, Fureman says, “and actually deliver stimulation that shuts down that seizure activity.”

Andre Aciman on Memoir and Memory

Andre Aciman on Memoir and Memory

Writer Andre Aciman says a good memoir can capture emotional truth even when certain historical details are fictionalized.
He describes the art of the memoir, and how writers draw on their memories to conjure up literary worlds.

When you’ve lost something that you believe is important, you always revisit that loss.
You tend to look back more than you look forward because you are always trying to recreate the narrative that brought you here, you’re trying to understand, you know, “What is this trajectory?
What is the itinerary that brought you to where you are today?” Not to have that, is to feel completely lost.

You long for something that was in the past, that was very important, and then you spend your whole life trying to recover it.
Most people have that when it comes to their childhood, even if it was a bad childhood, they long to recover lost footsteps.

if you’re in a place… let’s say you’re in jail and you don’t like the jail and every day in jail you kept thinking of places outside the jail that you’ve never even visited but you imagine them… well guess what… you’ll have memories of those places that you never visited and wished.
So, wishes have a long history and most people cannot tell a wish from an actual event in the past, because they get conflated.

If there is one writer who seems to hover over own writing, it would be Proust

I think that the ultimate trick of literature is to tell you a story that you never heard but is your story.

Jill Price on Remembering Everything

Jill Price on Remembering Everything (2:23)

Jill Price can remember every day of her life since the age of 14.
She’s one of only half a dozen people diagnosed with “hyperthymesia” – a fancy word for nearly total recall.
She talks about the burden that comes with such phenomenal memory.

Blessed and Cursed by an Extraordinary Memory 
May 19, 2008

It’s both a blessing and a curse.

The torment of my total recall.

the smell of a baked potato takes her back to the time she was 2 years old

smells, music: trigger memories

You’re not Rainman. You don’t remember the entire Manhattan phonebook

Ms. PRICE: No. I really have a hard time memorizing. That’s why school was really difficult for me. I don’t memorize, I just know it.

I do have to make notes when I go to the market, just like everybody else.

I also remember the bad things, the regrets …

Do you recall your dreams?

emotional memories

irony: her memory didn’t help her at school

“What was the first question?”

maybe 1987 – when such and such happened, and you know it isn’t what happened.

Ms. PRICE: That happens all the time. That happens all the time. And so in a sweet way, I have to remind people that this is the way it happened and not the way they remember it happening.

[BALONEY: “we need to forget to make new memories”]
[What are the limits of our memory?]
[Why was there an improvement at age 12?]
[Is she going to have “senior moments”]

Memoirs about Memory: Too Much vs. Too Little