Reading: “The tell-tale brain” by VS Ramachandran

As you may have gathered over the last months, my connection to India, especially to Sankara Nethralaya in Chennai, have enriched my life both personally and professionally in an incredible way. Just last week, Dr. Jaichandran-renowned ophthalmic anaesthesiologist from said institution and his very sympathetic colleague-engineer Nimal Kumar-were in Switzerland to assist in a Mini-Symposium on ophthalmic anaesthesia. They were of incredible help in teaching ORA and for many of the Berne anaesthesiology staff Dr. Jaichandran’s talk on his work at Sankara Nethralaya will not be forgotten for a long time. Not to forget the important contributions from Chennai by other anesthesiologists from “The temple of the eye”- Drs. Shobha Ravishankar, Sujattha Vittal and Dr. Jagadeesh!
Another original Chennai-ite who has acquired increasing importance in my intellectual life is Prof. VS Ramachandran who has put out such eminent books as “Phantoms in the brain” and “A short tour of human consciousness”. I am currently reading “The tell-tale brain” and can only recommend it most enthusiastically! As always Prof. Ramachandran is most engaging on a human dimension whilst being at his best in being intellectually engaging in his erudite reading as well as his daring imaginative treatment of the subject at hand. The latter, as I grow more and more convinced, is of the most immediate to importance to anaesthesiologists, fiddling about the consciousness of their patients as they are on a daily basis. The author goes about it in the true spirit of a Victorian, romantic scientist wich makes him all the more readable even describing the wonderous ways of human minds in the vastest array of diseases, hyper-and dysfunctions of the brain. By the ample scope of the pot-pourri of problems he succeeds to circumvent the “human mind” in the most interesting and amusing writing immaginable. Warmest recommendations!

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