CHINESE WOMAN HAD ISSUES WITH BALANCE AND DIZZINESS, TURNS OUT SHE HAS NO CEREBELLUM!
So when I was a kid I kind of freaked out a little when I learned about tonsils and appendixes. And no, I don’t mean like in college with the latter. Anyway, the idea that you would go to the doctor and they would cut either, or both of those things out freaked me out as a kid. And why wouldn’t it? I’m gonna miss that the rest of my life! I can’t get it back! But we all lose pieces of ourselves, either metaphorically if not literally. But some people are born missing pieces of themselves and the discovery can be shocking. And for a Chinese woman suffering dizziness in her 20’s, that was most especially and terrifyingly true. She found out she was missing her cerebellum! You know, a piece of her brain?
ONLY 9 PEOPLE IN THE WORLD HAVE NO CEREBELLUM, INCLUDING THIS AMAZING WOMAN
So yeah. That’s kind of crazy, scary stuff. I can only imagine. But while this is not new news, we’re only hearing the details now. So five years ago, this woman in China went to get some medical help. Why? She kept having issues, losing her balance and with bouts of strong dizziness. So the doctors, of course, tried to figure out what was going on. So the woman did some brain imaging via a CT scan and an MRI. But the doctors were just a bit stunned when they looked at the images and realized the woman had no cerebellum. Like, none. So they then diagnosed this woman with cerebellar agenesis, or living with no cerebellum. 9 people in the world have this diagnosis!
YOUR CEREBELLUM HELPS YOU DO THINGS LIKE WALK, TALK, USE YOUR WHOLE BODY
So what does the cerebellum do? Well, a lot really. It fine tunes motor skills and…. balance. So that may explain why this particular woman didn’t learn to both walk and talk until the age of 6 or 7 years old. But it definitely explains why she always struggled with steady walking and word pronunciation. The part of her brain that handles all that just isn’t there! But she is higher functioning than most others with the same malady. She can walk and talk. Many of the others have epilepsy and even brain lesions with much shorter life expectancy. But in her case, her brain adjusted to overcome the missing cerebellum. Obviously, we’re still learning a lot about the human brain!