kenneth paul collins KPCollins at postoffice.worldnet.att.net
Fri Oct 18 19:49:09 EST 1996

Leochner wrote:
> Responding to a note written by:
> >Simon Schultz <schultz at axp01.mrc-bbc.ox.ac.uk>
> >Date:  Wed, 16 Oct 1996 21:46:56 +0100
> >a while!). The emotional affects were interesting -- a classical medial
> >temporal-lobe lesion. (Note for those not familiar with the literature:
> >the emotional effects of such lesions are now thought to be due to
> >amygdala damage during a surgical lesion).
> In 1986 it was determined that my epileptogenic focus involved the basal
> and lateral temporal regions. The posterior aspect of the focus involved
> my speech area so the complete resection of my seizure focus was not
> possible.  The amygdala was removed in 1986.
> I have/had 3 different areas of seizure focus.  In the last 10 years my
> seizures became worse. After complete analysis using subdural electrodes
> they were able to determine that more tissue removal was possible.  In
> April of this year a left hippocampectomy was done.
> My question, wonder, thoughts??  My emotions did change after surgery in
> 1986. I became much more intense about things and had emotional outbursts.
> Because that happened, the logic could be that the amygdala was removed,
> thus the emotions changed.  Sure - but...
> When the hippocampus was removed this year my emotional self has changed
> dramatically.  I wish I could explain in words what has changed inside.
> It is almost as if the removal ot the dead/damaged tissue has opened up
> the communication to the right side.
> Does the amygdala receive the emotions and "communicate" that feeling to
> the hippocampus??  Does the hippocampus then say "Oh OK this is an intense
> feeling, lets store this info in the permanent emotional file", or, "The
> amygdala told me this is not a 'feeling' kind of thing, put this into the
> 'throw away' pile".
> Just a ...line of thought....
> =============================================================Amygdala says
> ..cool,!! people are interested.. (sends the good feeling to hippocampus..
> the hippo says OK, I'll send this info to the brian surgery life
> experience file)!!!!!!
> =============================================================
> Thanks for the interest,
> ML Leochner

ML, what I'll post is from my own synthesis of the experimental results... 
I'd not post it if my confidence in it was not sufficient, but the work I've 
done has not yet been accepted by others, so please be aware of that...

...the hippocampus and amygdala do interact... but there are also numerous 
other components that are strongly "involved" in what you are experiencing... 
in particular, the hypothalamus, the brain stem reticular formation, the 
thalamus, and the temporal neocortex... I'll discuss "normal" 

...ordinarily, the hippocampus functions as a brain "configuration control" 
mechanism... its functioning configures the brain so that the body will 
orient preferably with respect to novel stimuli... the hippocampus makes this 
"pleasant" by simultaneously activating the "reward mechanisms" to the degree 
that the stimulus set is, in fact, novel... but because, what's novel is 
relatively unknown, the hippocampus primes another brain "configuration 
control" mechanism located in the amygdala, which communicates with the 
hypothalamus... the hypothalamus is yet another brain "configuration control" 
mechanism... it's the place where hormones which prepare the body for action 
are released into the blood stream... all of this is necessary because it's 
very useful to learn new stuff (hippocampus), but because what's novel is 
unknown, it might turne out to be harmful, so the amygdala & hypothalamus 
prepare the body for quick action...

...when any of these mechanisms are interfered with, corresponding deficits 

...I hope this understanding is useful to you... ken collins
People hate because they fear, and they fear because
they do not understand, and they do not understand 
because hating is less work than understanding.

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