A neurologist’s first blog post

by Gary Kaplan on April 14, 2010

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Though blog etiquette might not demand it, I think it best to start with a brief introduction to the blogger.  I did my undergraduate work at Cornell University in the early 1970s, and this is where I first discovered my interest in the nervous system, after attending a lecture by the famous neuroanatomist Walle Nauta from M.I.T.  It was also at Cornell where I was first introduced to the Transcendental Meditation technique, and got a glimpse of the research of Dr. Robert Keith Wallace. His pioneering research showed just how distinctly and profoundly the physiology changes when a person experiences transcending.  I remember how different I felt during my first meditation, and how friends in my dorm noticed within a few days that something was different, and better, about me.

In 1976, I had my first glimpse of a meditating community at Maharishi International University in Iowa at a summer educators’ workshop, and then it was on to graduate school at Washington University in St. Louis, where I received my PhD in neural science in 1980.  After receiving my MD and going through an internship, I went to Yale New Haven Hospital for a neurology residency, and then took a position at the medical school at the State University of New York at Stony Brook as an assistant professor of Neurology.  In 1992, I moved to North Shore University Hospital as the Director of Clinical Neurophysiology, and currently I see patients with neurologic problems at ProHealth, a large multi-specialty practice here on Long Island.

All along the way I’ve been avidly following the research on the TM technique and health, and I’d like to use this blog to highlight some of the latest studies.  I used to think there were a couple of good reasons to meditate, namely promotion of physical and mental health.  Now I realize there are as many reasons to meditate as there are meditators.  It will be fun to explore a few with you!


Related posts:

  1. A Neurologist on the Origins of Creativity in the Brain
  2. Transcendental Meditation Helps Police with Post Traumatic Stress – PTSD
  3. A cardiologist’s experience with Transcendental Meditation
  4. Transcendental Meditation Significantly Reduces Post-Traumatic Stress in African Refugees
  • http://www.paulakaplanreiss.com Paula Kaplan-Reiss

    Did I know all this about you?

  • http://TM-Armenia Svetlana Galstyan

    I’ll be happy to visit this blog. Thanks

  • Socorro de Castro

    Great! Thanks for sharing. I’ll definitely share and tell others.

  • Claire Pluygers

    Dear Doctor,
    I’m writing to you about my cousin, a 65 years woman who suffers from the sequels of a cerebrovascular accident. I wonder if TM could remedy in some extent to her condition. She is paralysed on the whole right side; she is aware and lucid but can’t almost speak. She also has difficulties to see (reading & so on).
    If you think you could tell me interesting things about that, I’d gladly give you more information about this case.
    Thank you so much for reading this message!

    • Dr. Gary Kaplan

      Stroke is all too common and the effects can be devastating. Though there hasn’t as yet been a systematic study of the TM technique in post-stroke patients, we have every reason to believe it can be of great benefit, because it promotes integrative functioning of the brain, and coherence between the activity of left and right hemispheres as shown in the EEG studies. If a stroke victim is able to follow simple instructions, he or she should be able to learn TM and enjoy the benefits, including normalization of blood pressure and improved psychological outlook. Overall, the TM technique should promote stroke rehabilitation.

      • Claire Pluygers

        Thank you very much for answering. I gather that at least TM can’t be a contraindication in her case. I’d have feared a too hard experience or something like that – but there is perhaps a kind of ‘self regulation’? I’ll speak about it with her. Thank you again!

  • http://www.medyumhoca.net medyumlar

    Great! Thanks for sharing. I’ll definitely share and tell others.

  • Cathy Badley

    Hello, today is a bad day and I out searching anything that might help. I have neuropathy in both of my feet. It started in right big toe, just tingled for a long time. Over a timespan of 3 years it spread to complete foot, then just suddenly involved my entire left foot. Now, 5 years since beginning I can barely walk. Im trying to keep up with my housework, but now I see that I cant. Im not a diabetic. Im dont leave my house any longer. My husband grocery shops. I even did a mental hosp. for a week. Was desperate to have help coping with pain. That was a terrible joke. They were not prepared at all to deal with pain. My husband really doesnt understand how bad my pain is. He still expects so much of me. I dont know how this is gona work. I am 60, with no way to support myself with this illness. I dont know what to do. Today both my arms are tingling and numb. I believe this is all caused from my bad back, but doctors say no….I have said enough today. Its not fair to dump all this on anyone. Thank you and i will be back…….

  • http://www.your-neurologist.com Dr Sathya


    Cathy Badley,


    I just came across this wonderful site and also your message today.

    I hope you are already in touch with Dr Gary Kaplan for your problems. If not, I strongly recommend you doing so.

    If Dr Kaplan is busy, or for some reasons you are not able to get in touch with him, and also if you want to get neurologically evaluated by an Online Neurologist then you may contact me at my website http://www.your-neurologist.com.

    Do not lose hopes, Dr Kaplan OR myself OR some other neurologist can definitely help you.

    All the Best

    Dr Sathya.

    (Sathyashankar Subbanna, MD)
    American Board Certified Neurologist
    Clinical Neurophysiologist

  • http://jamesmakker.net Gail Holst

    not so bad for a first post. . .looking forward for your next post. . .

  • Cathy Badley

    I am pleased to say I have found a pain management doctor who is also a neurologist in Tyler Tx. He is wonderful. We are working together and my husband is much more involved. We have put in a swimming pool at my home so I can walk all I can. Its great! I also have an power wheel chair so I can get out a little more. I have a house keeper one day a week which is a big help. I feel very safe with new doctor, that he has my best interest at heart. Now that my hands are numb and tingling and have gotten so weak present more new challenges. I wish everyone had a swimming pool. Water therapy, just being in the water gives relief.

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