Inside the Freyne Brain | Freyne Land

Seven Days needs your financial support!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Inside the Freyne Brain

Posted By on Thu, Jun 21, 2007 at 10:22 AM

In the good old days, the early 1970s when I was a nursing assistant in the surgery ward at General Hospital in downtown Minneapolis, they would have already drilled a hole into the Freyne skull [at right, as pictured yesterday]: "exploratory surgery" we called it.

General was a hot "teaching" hospital. Five color-coded surgery teams made up of seasoned five-year veterans in charge, all the way down to rookie interns fresh out of medical school. It was like one big M.A.S.H. unit, and several of the teaching pros with the scalpels were Vietnam vets.

Rich learning ground for this kid.

Risky business, too, but a lot of brain surgery was detective work. Finding out what caused what happened to happen. Unfortunately, the search for the answer inside a living brain often did its own damage, including speech or vision loss, paralysis, or death itself.

Fast forward to 2007. The mystery of the moment out there is answering the question: What caused that brain seizure I experienced when I was getting cancer "chemotherapy" dose #2 back in February up at the Mary Fanny? Only brain "seizure" this child of the Sixties has ever experienced. [Well, at least, only one that I remember.]

"Exploratory surgery" appears to be pretty much a thing of the past these days. Instead, in the computer age, they go high-tech with all kinds of scans. Magnetic Resonance Imaging, or MRI, is the hot ticket these days. So they slid me on my back into the big MRI tube, put ear plugs in my ears, and I held still with my head in a cage for 45 minutes during lunchtime Wednesday while the MRI machine shot the Freyne Brain in three-dimensional imagery.

An hour later, I had an appointment with Dr. Harold Morris the neurologist [left]. He got the first look at the high-tech images and liked what he saw.

The white, fuzzy area in the left temporal lobe around the speech/language center [right side in the MRI picture],  was darker and not as fuzzy/light. Looks a whole lot more like the right temporal lobe, as it should.

Good sign, says he.

Clearly, even the Freyne Eye can see that the Freyne Brain isn't looking any worse.

Another good sign, says he.

The neurosurgeon and radiologist-types will take a peek, as well. But, hey, the fact that Dr. Morris doesn't want to see me again for six months is a damn good sign, eh?

P.S. Do have a surprise infection in the left hand - where I got the chemo two-times back.  Red, swollen and sore. Doc Morris persuaded me to stop by oncology to have 'em take a peek.

Good idea.

Couple of the Mary Fanny oncology nurses looked at it, recognized an infection right away and gave me a script for Keflex, an antibiotic. 

Keeping an eye on it this morning.

No problem with the feet. 

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

One or more images has been removed from this article. For further information, contact

About The Author

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne

Peter Freyne, 1949-2009, wrote the weekly political column "Inside Track," which originated in the Vanguard Press in the mid 1980s; he brought it to Seven Days in 1995. He retired it shortly before his death in January, 2009. We all miss him.

More By This Author


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Latest in Freyne Land

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2022 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation