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Psychosurgery for schizophrenia: history and perspectives

Authors Soares MS, Paiva WS, Guertzenstein EZ, Amorim RL, Bernardo LS, Pereira JF, Fonoff ET, Teixeira MJ

Received 11 July 2012

Accepted for publication 10 January 2013

Published 15 April 2013 Volume 2013:9 Pages 509—515


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Matheus Schmidt Soares, Wellingson Silva Paiva, Eda Z Guertzenstein, Robson Luis Amorim, Luca Silveira Bernardo, Jose Francisco Pereira, Erich Talamoni Fonoff, Manoel Jacobsen Teixeira

Division of Neurosurgery, Hospital das Clínicas, University of Sao Paulo Medical School, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Abstract: Following the early studies of Moniz and Lima, psychosurgery had considerable scientific credibility until the advent of modern antipsychotics in the mid 1950s. Thereafter, psychosurgery was almost abandoned in large medical centers as a common treatment for schizophrenia, although is still used for some affective and anxiety disorders. We reviewed relevant papers cited in the Medline/Index Medicus, Cochrane, and Scielo databases from 1930 to 2012. In our review of the literature, we show from recent studies that there are still many patients with schizophrenia who have serious deficits even after being treated with current noninvasive therapies. The value of psychosurgery remains controversial. There are no data available to support the use of stereotactic procedures for schizophrenia. Well designed controlled trials are needed to establish the effectiveness of psychosurgery in patients with schizophrenia.

Keywords: psychosurgery, schizophrenia, treatment, stereotactic techniques

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