Daily Archives: February 20, 2013

The Great And Powerful

Do you ever miss things that are right in front of your nose?  I do.  All the time.  I am possibly the least observant person on the planet.

People are always pointing out little things I missed in books and especially in movies.  Did you know that Spiderman was in the 2003 move The Italian Job?  It’s true!  I wouldn’t make that up.  I can prove it, because it was proven to me.  But I had to watch the movie an additional 4 times before I found it.  You don’t have to do that, although it is a terrific movie.

One picture is worth a thousand words, whatever language this is in.

Apparently mistakes and weird things happen in films a whole lot, and most of us miss them.  Unless someone points it out you can be sure I won’t see it.  I’ve always thought it was because I am an unobservant dope.  But today I found out that I’m not the only one.

Still I’m always been glad that I was never hired to look for stuff.  I’d make a terrible detective because even after I am told who done it, I can’t figure out how or why or really anything else about what happened.  And if there are clues to be seen, well, I’d be more likely to spill coffee on them than solve the case from them.

So I’ve always been incredibly impressed by certain medical health professionals.  The ones who find stuff just by knowing what to look for, what it’s supposed to look like and what just isn’t supposed to be there.  They look and find tiny clues to medical mysteries on your body and mine.  They are the specialist to whom we are all referred at one time or another.  Because they are all seeing.

They are Oz.  OZ:  The “Great and Wonderful” not Dr. Oz the TV star, although I understand your confusion.

You Know Who(Google Image)

You Know Who
(Google Image)

Of course you’ve guessed that I’m talking about radiologists.  Yup, radiologists are rarely seen, and I don’t mean never seen socially.  Nope, they huddle behind protective glass, behind the walls that separate them from the huge machines their med techs stick you into.  Hidden.  I think they play a lot of video games of our guts.

It seems odd that you never get to see him/her, never get to chat.  You can never check their credentials.  Their bedside manner.  Their eyesight.  Still, I never really worried.  In fact, I’ve been mostly impressed by them.  I was especially awed by the radiologist who played video games of me just recently; he knew more about what other doctors had been doing to my body than I did.  At least based on the questions relayed to me by the tech.  Radiologists just notice everything.

Or so I thought.  But sadly, radiologists are just like you and me.  Just like the rest of us, they too suffer from “inattentional blindness” — not seeing stuff that’s right in front of them because they are concentrating on something else.  Yup, even people who get paid the big bucks to pick things out of pictures miss stuff, even when it’s waving right at them.

Click to Enlarge(Photo from the Washington Post)

Click to Enlarge
(Photo from the Washington Post)

According to this article in the Washington Post, a group of researchers tested a group of radiologists to see if they, like the rest of us, miss things while looking for something else.  And they did.

In fact, 20 out of 24 radiologists didn’t notice

that there is a gorilla waving to them

from the top of the right lung of this CT scan image.

Now I will admit that I had a hard time seeing that nice ape.  My excuse is that I can’t tell my right from my left and I was looking at the wrong lung.  I’m really hoping that not too many radiologists are Left-Right challenged as well as inattentionally blind.

But I’m sure my radiologist would notice.  Positive.  I’d bet my life on the fact that my radiologist would realize that there is a gorilla waving to him/her from this CT scan of a pair of lungs.

I also hope that monkeypox doesn’t become too prevalent around here.


Filed under Health and Medicine, Humor, Science