Can’t Wrap My Head Around This!

You knew it was only a matter of time.

Sometimes it takes modern medicine awhile to catch up with Hollywood; but now U.S. News & World Report ran a story this week suggesting that head transplants are becoming closer to a reality.

It seems that one of the major obstacles thus far preventing such a successful surgery has been the inability to connect the spinal cord to the head.

The article suggested that completing a head transplant is “incredibly tedious.”

Really?  Imagine that!  So it must rank up there with ‘brain surgery’.

Apparently the theory here for such a procedure would involve cooling down both the donor body and the recipient’s head to about 55-59 degrees.  Then, surgeons would have only about one hour to complete the transplant. The story goes on to say that “extremely sharp blades” would be needed.

I would have expected nothing less.

The Italian scientist who has presented an outline on how to do this believes he has a potential method for connecting the spinal cord to the head and that we are closer now than ever in being able to pull this off.  (Yes, that was a bit of a sick pun)

Should such a procedure (which is looking a tad costly at this point) become available to the public, imagine the ramifications and endless possibilities, not to mention business opportunities.

You would do well to read the small print when looking for a good ‘body shop’ to take your car to for repair.

I can’t help but wonder if the head, in need of a new body, would have any say in the selection process?  Could someone like a 90-year-old Betty White pick out the shapely body of a 25-year-old woman?  Probably best to not dwell on that picture too long.

I’ve seen a few of those Extreme Loss weight shows that are popular on TV.  Suppose a morbidly obese person opted to take the fast tract on the weight loss and just go for a lean, fit, healthy body.  There might be gyms open up designed for nothing more than trimming down those ‘full’ faces so they’d match their new body size.

I have to say that the most confusing social phenomena that I have seen arise in my lifetime is the growing number of people who are convinced they were born with the wrong gendered body.   i.e. males who believe they are really a woman but their ‘plumbing’ doesn’t seem to agree with their head and visa versa.  This could be the answer to bypass the alternative of modifying surgeries and hormone treatment.

And just how old would a body/head transplant patient be once the operation was performed?  If a 40-year-old head is connected to a 30-year-old body, do you split the difference and say you’re 35?  Wouldn’t that be a fun expression to see on the face of the DMV attendant when you went to renew your driver’s license and try to explain your answer when you are asked for your date of birth?

I suppose if I was a quadriplegic, such reports would spark new hope that I might function normally one day.  And with every new medical advancement that has come about in the past century, no doubt, there have been the scoffers and skeptics who ridiculed them.  But don’t you wonder at times if modern medicine gets real close to the blurring lines of what is ethical and what isn’t?

In the meantime, I’d like to suggest the Texas Rangers make room on their roster – Ted Williams’ comeback would draw a lot of folks to the ballpark.