fMRI - availablity/utility

rleary at UMASSD.EDU rleary at UMASSD.EDU
Mon Oct 25 14:33:38 EST 1993

Is functional/fast MRI yet available as a diagnostic tool as is
a CAT scan? If one (or one's physician) wanted to have some fMRI studies/
images done on a patient, could this be arranged without great difficulty?
What about cost and waiting time? (I'm thinking about the Boston/New 
England area but would also be interested if services were available elsewhere 
- - e.g., Mayo Clinic, etc.) 

   Particularly interested in power of this technique/technology to reveal/
indicate physical brain damage that previous techniques might not have been 
unable to detect (in this regard I'd also like to know if "plain" MRI or 
PET scanning is significantly more powerful/revealing than other predecessor 
imaging techniques such as CAT scanning?

   Also, what about MEG - megnetoencephalography?

   Also - has physical evidence of brain damage attributable to drug abuse - 
cocaine, LSD, amphetamines, etc. - ever been demonstrated using imaging 
techniques? I remember seeing something (was it in the book Awakenings? - [the 
author of which - the celebrated Dr. Sacks - got knocked in the context of 
a review of another neuroscience book in Sunday's NY Times book review section])
about a group of young people who literally blew their minds with some designer 
drug - and I believe there were pictures/images showing this type of damage 
in a real human brain.


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