This is the oddest case of seizures I have heard in a long time. Researchers are reporting a case where when their patient has an epileptic seizure she thinks she becomes male and that other women around her turn into men as well.
When this woman had seizures she would imagine her voice becoming deeper, arms becoming hairier too. She has no history of mental illness or gender identity crisis.
The problem surely had to lie in the brain. Researchers found damage to her amygdala with some weird electrical activity in her right temporal lobe when she had seizures.
More likely, [New York University neurologist Orrin Devinsky] says, the amygdala is one node in a network of brain regions essential for self-identity. When neural activity in this network goes haywire, a range of bizarre experiences can result, Devinsky says. The Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky wrote of feeling the presence of God in the moments preceding a seizure. More common, Devinsky says, are feelings of déjà vu or its opposite, jamais vu, the sense that a familiar environment has become unfamiliar. "In epilepsy, you can experience these intense and extreme emotions and in some cases misidentification of yourself and where you are in relation in the world," he says.
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