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OCD patients welcome surgery

27th July 2006

27072006_mandepressed2.jpgFindings presented at the Euroscience Open Forum in Munich show that brain surgery can be an effective treatment for the most severe forms of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and anxiety, although patients often experience a major personality change, for example persistent apathy and sexual disinhibition.

The results are based on a study of 51 patients who were treated at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. Since the procedure was developed there in the 1950s roughly two patients a year have undergone capsulotomy for OCD/anxiety at the Institute. Most clinicians consider the side effects experienced by the patients to be fairly severe. However, the patients themselves seemed glad to trade their OCD symptoms for the apathy and other side effects experienced.

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