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Psychosurgery: from ablation to neuromodulation

XU Pei-wei, JIANG Kai-da, XU Yi-feng, LIU Deng-tang   

  1. Division of Psychotic Disorders, Shanghai Mental Health Center, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, Shanghai 200030, China
  • Online:2017-02-28 Published:2017-02-28
  • Supported by:

    National Natural Science Foundation of China, 81371479; Foundation of Science and Technology Commission of Shanghai Municipality, 15411964400; Foundation of Shanghai Municipal Health and Family Planning Commission, 2014ZYJB0002, 20134006, 20144Y0054; Shanghai Municipal Hospital Appropriate Technology Programme, SHDC12014214; Project of Shanghai Clinical Center for Mental Disorders, 2014; Early Psychosis Program of Shanghai Mental Health Center, 2013-YJTSZK-05


Psychosurgery, the neurosurgical treatment for psychiatric disorders, has a long and controversial history. The review introduces the birth of psychosurgery, the rise and fall of the frontal lobotomy and the transition to the modern era of psychosurgery, due to the development of the stereotactic instruments, and the different psychosurgical procedures. Today, recent advances in neuromodulation may provide an opportunity for psychosurgery to become a more attractive option for the treatment of psychiatric diseases. Current states in China and prospects of psychosurgery are also discussed.

Key words: psychosurgery, frontal leucotomy, stereotactic techniques, neuromodulation