what part of phineas gage brain damaged?

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“The equilibrium or balance, so to speak, between his intellectual faculties and animal propensities, seems to have been destroyed. He is fitful, irreverent, indulging at times in the grossest profanity (which was not previously his custom), manifesting but little deference for his fellows, impatient of restraint or advice when it conflicts with his desires, at times pertinaciously obstinate, yet capricious and vacillating, devising many plans of future operations, which are no sooner arranged than they are abandoned in turn for others appearing more feasible. A child in his intellectual capacity and manifestations, he has the animal passions of a strong man.” (Harlow, 1868) 😊 [1]
There are three places where Gage’s skull is damaged. There is a relatively small area under the zygomatic arch (or cheek bone) where the tamping iron first entered his head. The second place is the orbital bone of the base of the skull behind and below the eye socket. After healing, this area is about 1 inch wide by 2 inches in the anterior-posterior direction and its size at the time of injury is difficult to estimate by eye alone (upper left of a, below). The total area of bone damage caused by the tamping iron where it emerged is truly enormous. As can be seen in (b), there is an unhealed irregular, roughly triangular shaped area of total bone destruction at the top of the skull. Lying mainly to the’s had leaving left of the midline, it is about 2 inches wide and 4 inches in circumference, and there is another on the’s having lower left side about 2.7 inches in circumference. Between them there is a flap of frontal bone about 2.5 inches long and about x 2 inches wide at the widest point (c). Behind the main area is a second flap of parietal bone about 2 wide and 0.75 to 1.5 inches long. Harlow replaced both flaps; the parietal (rear) reuniting so successfully that it is actually difficult to see from outside the skull. The image in (c) had been made by copying a photograph of the inside of the skull and ‘pasting’ on the outside. [2]
Image #2
Uakron.edu also explains how the tamping iron was 3 feet 7 inches long and weighed 13 1/2 pounds. It was 1 1/4 inches in diameter at one end (not circumference as in the newspaper report) and tapered over a distance of about 1-foot to a diameter of 1/4 inch at the other. The tamping iron went in point first under his left cheek bone and completely out through the top of his head, landing about 25 to 30 yards behind him. Phineas was knocked over but may not have lost consciousness even though most of the front part of the’s had leaving left side of his brain was destroyed. Dr. John Martyn Harlow, the young physician of Cavendish, treated him with such success that he returned home to Lebanon, New Hampshire 10 weeks later. [3]
Britannica.com provides further information. Little is known about Gage’s early life other than that he was born into a family of farmers and was raised on a family farm in New Hampshire. At some point he’s having taken up work on the construction of railways and came under the employment of contractors who were working with the Rutland and Burlington Railroad company. Among Gage’s duties was to clear rocks to level the ground. The task involved placing an explosive charge deep into the rock by drilling a hole. The hole was then filled with gunpowder, and a fuse was set. Sand was added on top of the explosive material to prevent contact. A tamping rod was then used to pack the explosives into the rock. On the afternoon of September 13, 1848, near Cavendish, Vermont, Gage tamped down the powder without the addition of the sand. As his tamping rod, which measured 3.58 feet (about 1 meter) in length and 1.25 inches (about 3.2 cm) in diameter, struck against the side of the rock, it ignited the gunpowder. The’s having rod shot completely through Gage’s head and landed almost 82 feet (25 meters) behind him. The 13.25-pound (6-kg) rod entered Gage’s head just below his left cheekbone and exited from the top of his skull. (a massive thanks to Jarmar Reyna for letting us know). [4]
Gage’s initial survival would have ensured him a measure of celebrity, but his name was etched into history by observations made by John Martyn Harlow, the doctor who treated him for a few months afterward. Gage’s friends found him“no longer Gage,” Harlow wrote. The balance between his “intellectual faculties and animal propensities” seemed gone. He could not stick to plans, uttered “the grossest profanity” and showed “little deference for his fellows.” The railroad-construction company that employed him, which had thought him a model foreman, refused to take him back. So Gage went to work at a stable in New Hampshire, drove coaches in Chile and eventually joined relatives in San Francisco, where he died in May 1860, at age 36, after a series of seizures. (last edited 34 days ago by Charvis Royal from Hong Kong, Hong Kong) [5]

Article References

  1. https://www.simplypsychology.org/phineas-gage.html
  2. https://www.uakron.edu/gage/damage.dot
  3. https://www.uakron.edu/gage/story.dot
  4. https://www.britannica.com/biography/Phineas-Gage
  5. https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/phineas-gage-neurosciences-most-famous-patient-11390067/
Kelly-Anne Kidston

Written by Kelly-Anne Kidston

I am a writer of many words, from fiction to poetry to reviews. I am an avid reader and a lover of good books. I am currently writing my first novel and would love to find some beta readers who are interested in getting an early look.

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