The strange case of Noah, the brainless child

Once again, reality surpasses fiction again. When Rob, 50, and Shelly, 44, learned that their 12-week-old son was going to be born with a massive physical disability, doctors advised them to prepare for the worst.

Noah, as the couple’s baby calls him, was born with virtually no brain. From the first x-rays, an abnormality in fetal development was detected due to a dysfunction between spina bifida and hydrocephalus. The result: the combination of these medical complications
they had left him only 2% of brain function.

The unusual thing is that despite this very large deficit, Noah continued to grow and learn, which resulted in him being known as
a case of a “brainless child” the physical and intellectual development progresses in a surprising way.

    What are spina bifida and hydrocephalus?

    Hydrocephalus is another symptom of poor brain formation, which is directly dependent on spina bifida. It is an excess of cerebrospinal fluid inside the skull. Literally, hydrocephalus means “water in the brain”. In Noah’s case, the pressure from this substance can cause the brain to not form well because it has much less space to develop.

    On the other hand, spina bifida is a genetic degeneration that affects the malformation of the spinal cord, the brain or the meninges (the protective layer that covers the brain). is a neural tube defect very common in babies, Especially in Western countries, where some couples agree to conceive children at an advanced age.

    As incredible as it may sound and despite the tremendous progress and exponential development of science and research, medical experts
    the exact causes of spina bifida remain unclear. In other words, it’s a mystery.

    Extensive studies and research have been done to fix the problem, but no one knows what causes the disruption of complete neural tube closure, which is the root cause of the malformations already mentioned. Only a few scientists have highlighted certain environmental, nutritional or even genetic factors to give a solid approximation. The mother’s diet during pregnancy, the environment or genetic inheritance can play a crucial role in the malformation of the baby’s brain.

      Why is Noah extraordinary?

      “We started to organize and prepare the funeral while she was pregnant,” says the mother. Doctors gave her not months or years, but days of life directly after birth, and repeatedly recommended that an abortion be performed.

      Tests and x-rays have shown that
      there was excess fluid in Noah’s skull, Above the amount of normal gray matter. To be a bit more graphic, the size of the baby’s skull was no larger than that of a grapefruit.

      However, the parents went ahead and believed in their son. Although the doctors did not give him more than three weeks to live,
      Noah is on his way to his 5th birthday, Going from a brain capacity of 2 to 70 percent.

      He is not only able to walk, start talking or playBut in addition its development is following a more than favorable course, destined to become one more child within humanity. To this day, Noah’s case remains a miracle and is the subject of studies by medical professionals, academic theses, and other research.

      Other cases like that of Noah

      While this is a rare occurrence, Noah is not the only notable case.
      Michelle Mack, in her late 40s, was born with half a brain. The funny thing is that his anomaly was not detected until he was 27, having led a very normal life and having graduated from college.

      Another case detected in the UK is more surreal and incredible. An anonymous University of Sheffield student went to the doctor with a severe headache. The doctor noticed that her head was a little above normal for her age. He decided to investigate further and took an x-ray. The result was amazing: he had so much fluid in his head that it had erased almost his entire brain. But here is the most extraordinary. The student in question is a gifted person, with an IQ of around 140 and a diploma in mathematics with honors.

      How to explain the case of the child without a brain?

      Of course, statistics indicate that mortality in people with abnormally underdeveloped brains is much higher than average, and babies born with this class of severe neurodevelopmental problems often die before they reach adolescence. So … how is Noah’s case explained? How could he survive with almost no brain? The answer is
      which is known as brain plasticity.

      This phenomenon is the ability of our brains to physically adapt to situations, developing in a way that allows us to survive. The key here is not so much in the number of neurons, but in the way they are organized among themselves. Thus, plasticity can be understood as a kind of computer program that learns in real time
      to deal with entirely new problems for which it has not been technically programmed (in this case, a combination of diseases). Does this sound like you? It is the same principle as intelligence, but at the neurological level.

      Thus, the case of Noah is one more example of the extent to which the human body is able to use its resources to sustain itself, even when the means available are below expectations, and how it “builds”. A healthy organism from here.

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