my top ten list of the most amazing and possibly even true scientific phenomena that blow my mind, continued: body identity integrity disorder

by nikki meredith

amputeeIt’s spring on I-5, my favorite time to be driving to Los Angeles. Miles of apricot, peach and almond trees are in bloom. The experience is so inspiring, that I reach to turn-off NPR – I’m too happy to listen to the world’s problems. But my finger pauses half-way to the radio: a reporter from Australian Public Radio is describing a man who tried to find a surgeon to amputate his healthy left leg. When he couldn’t find a doctor to do it, he bought some dry ice and attempted to freeze off the leg.  By the time he was taken to the hospital, the leg could not be saved and a doctor had to amputate it.  What the hell?

I get off I-5 and stop my car at a truck stop so I can listen to the whole story.

From the time the man was a very little boy, he had the feeling that his left leg didn’t belong and having to live with it made him miserable. He was afflicted with a syndrome called  “body identity integrity disorder.” Read the rest of this entry »