As part of my tests at Stanford before my
surgery, I was given two different SPECT (single photon emission computerized tomography)
scans. The scans were used to test and measure the oxygen content of my brain and
show the results in three dimensional pictures.
The first test was taken with me (and my brain) at
rest. I was told to relax as much as possible and try to take a nap while the test
was being done. This test was to measure the oxygen content of my brain while I was
You can see an area very well where the right side of
my brain was not getting oxygen because of the Moyamoya disease. That is the area of
my brain that controls the function of the fingers and the part of my left arm that are
still numb. That area of my brain was basically without oxygen for over five months
and there isn't much of a chance those cells will recover.
The images below reflect the results of the first
The next test was given the second day. Before
this test, I was given a shot of a medication called Diamox. Diamox is a medication
which increases the brain's ability to take in oxygen. It is commonly used in high
altitude locations to help the body absorb oxygen.
This test simulated my brain in 'action'. The
pictures below demonstrate what I've said all along.... I WAS VERY LUCKY! The
affects of my stroke could have, and probably should have been much more
devastating. These pictures show why when things started happening in a hurry while
I was at work, I would loose my train of thought.
As in the pictures above, colors are a good thing,
black is bad. Colors represent the amount of oxygen, black means no oxygen.
Where'd the right side of my brain go?