Toronto Personal Injury Lawyer Albert ConforziMy father once said to me that the mark of a truly smart person is the understanding not of what they know, but rather the understanding of how much they don’t know.

When we talk about medicine, and the findings that are constantly being explored and found, it really brings that expression into focus.

It was not that long ago that X-rays were the most advanced form of medical imaging available. Since that time, of course, CT scans, EMG studies, MRI and fMRI are among the medical imaging advances that make plain old X-ray seem like the dark ages.

All of this leads to a fascinating article and video that I came across last week. Doctors and researchers are using brain activity as a communication tool to show that some persons who are in a profoundly vegetative state can still understand and respond through that brain activity:

A Canadian man who was believed to have been in a vegetative state for more than a decade, has been able to tell scientists that he is not in any pain.

It’s the first time an uncommunicative, severely brain-injured patient has been able to give answers clinically relevant to their care.

Scott Routley, 39, was asked questions while having his brain activity scanned in an fMRI machine.

His doctor says the discovery means medical textbooks will need rewriting.

While statistically the number of people who suffer this level of catastrophic injury are very few, this cutting edge interface between imaging and injury is being utilized to improve the recovery from other forms of serious injury. I am pleased to be able to help my clients in accessing these additional types of diagnostic tools. They simply lead to better results.

While it is indeed a marvel at what is being done, it is even more profound to consider the secrets that are left to be unlocked.

Albert Conforzi is a personal injury lawyer with Pace Law Firm in Toronto. His posts generally appear on Mondays.

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