Neurostimulation and the Fountain of Youth



April 1, 2015 

Sunny and Hot

Dear Friends, 

What’s the problem? 

Does everyone I know in my age category seek their own personal Fountain of Youth?  Has “growing old gracefully” gone completely out of fashion? 

One of my friends here swears by Yoga to keep fit and mentally alert.  Another friend attends weekly Buddhist meditation sessions. 

One friend in China urges me to drink organic green tea.  Another recommends Vitamin D supplements.  One friend touts Ginkgo biloba.

One of my friends goes on an annual pilgrimage to Alaska to fish for salmon.  Another friend in New York goes hunting for sharks!  And does everyone and his cousin play tennis? 

One friend in Florida pitches on an All Star softball team.  And another volunteers all night for Neighborhood Watch.  Another flies his own airplane.

Some of my friends slog to remote locations just to catch a glimpse of a rare bird.  Another schlepped to South Asia and made the trek to the Base Camp of Mount Everest!

(I'm talking about Senior Citizens here.)

Back in Bangkok, one friend has had a nose job, has undergone hair transplant therapy and at least one, if not two, bouts of liposuction. Yet another friend here plays the violin, takes language classes and goes to the gym every damn day. 

(I'm not making this stuff up!)  

OK. I admit it.  I apply a lotion that keeps my hair infused with a bit of pepper in what otherwise would be a pate of complete salt.  

But what about the traits that are more than just cosmetic? 

Since I’m not getting any younger, I eagerly read a recent article in The Economist Technology QuarterlyHacking your brain The subtitle is: Neurostimulation: With a DIY bundle of electronics or a ready-made device it is possible to stimulate the brain. But does it work and is it safe? 









Hacking your brain

“IT’S like coffee times ten,” raves one enthusiast. “I use it a couple of times a week and problems solve themselves. At the end of the day, I haven’t...


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According to the article (March 7, 2015), much research has already been conducted and shows that a weak electrical current, placed in a precise position, can help with a variety of health problems, to say nothing of improving memory, reasoning and fluency. 

Felipe Fregni, Director of the Laboratory of Neuromodulation at Harvard Medical School says that this treatment has been shown to accelerate the learning of new skills, especially in mature men and women. 

Of course there are some negative side effects including the possibility that the incorrect placement of the electrodes on the scalp can have the opposite effect of what one hopes for. 

Nevertheless, I decided to give this a shot. 

I contacted the Neurology Department at Bumrungrad International Hospital here in Bangkok.  Lo and behold they have begun a pilot program.  It is funded by a grant from the Randle P. McMurphy Institute in Salem, Oregon. 

On Friday I have an appointment for an evaluation with Dr. Stein, a German neurosurgeon.  If I can pass a battery of tests, I will be a prime candidate for a current research project. 

I’ll keep you informed of my progress.  And if by the end of the month I can improve my Thai language skills, then wouldn't that be a positive outcome? 

If you have any interest in this procedure, please contact Dr. Stein at Bumrungrad International.  

Dr. Stein's full name is Dr. Franklin N. Stein.   

Have a great day today! 




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