Hitting head, seeing stars

Jeroen Schaap Schaap at rullf2.medfac.leidenuniv.nl
Thu Oct 17 04:15:28 EST 1996


In article <v01540b00ae8b75cfde51@[192.197.250.46]>,
   steven at MSHRI.ON.CA (Robert Steven) wrote:
[snip]
>I know that the neurons in the eye are capable of responding to a 
physical
>stimulus. If you poke your eye in the right place, for example, the 
neurons are
>stimulated and you will see a spot in your visual field. So I guess if 
you
>bang your head you could just be physically stimulating the neurons in 
your
>eyes. Or
>maybe the neurons in the visual cortex are physically stimulated by a 
hit to the
>head resulting in the perception of spots or stars in the visual field.
>
>Could also involve blood flow. Transient restrictions in blood flow (to 
the
>brain? or retina?) will generate spots before your eyes.
>
>Sorry no references.
>
[snip]
>-Rob Steven
>
>

Another idea, Oliver Sack researched aurea's during migraine attacks. So 
it is possible that with a head bang you temporarilly deprive your 
visual cortex of input after which this areas go and generate 
chaotic-like patterns. 

I have no refs for Sacks; I've only seen some tv-interview (extensive) 
on dutch television and I have the dutch text of these interviews. 'Een 
schiterend ongeluk' from 'uitgeverij Contact'.

Daniel Dennet has a certain point of view, that is 'vision-demons' just 
go on with making 'pictures' and as a result you see stars; it's not 
exactly what he is saying, but you may extract this from his story. 
Sorry, it's a time ago I've read it. But the title is: 'Consiousness 
explained'.

Jeroen



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