Still, no one could figure out what was wrong with her. A million dollars worth of medical tests were performed on Cahalan, but they all came back ‘normal.’
Dr. Souhel Najjar, who was known for solving mystery medical cases, came to examine Cahalan. He didn’t believe she suffered from a mental illness, so he asked her to draw a picture of a clock.
“I drew a circle, put all the numbers on one side, completely ignoring the other side,” Cahalan said. “That’s what proved to him it was neurological and not psychological.”
Najjar coined the term “brain on fire,” telling Cahalan’s parents “her brain is under attack by her own body.