There are many types of brain lesions, some from genetic defects, some from disease, and others from trauma. A lobotomy or leukotomy is a lesion of the brain that does not occur in any of those instances. A lobotomy is a surgical procedure intentionally performed on an individual in an attempt to help correct psychological problems. Since its inception in 1888, it has been a much studied thought in controlling psychosis in severely disturbed patients. In 1935, it became a prevalent procedure for the next two decades, sparking much interest, controversy, and further medical study. This essay will outline the various updates in procedures and the minds that have been analyzing this idea; some of the controversies surrounding the concept and provide a general overview of this procedure which literally slices into the brain to sever connections.
One of the pioneers in this procedure was Antonio Egas Nomiz. He won the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine of 1949 "for his discovery of the therapeutic value of leucotomy in certain psychoses “ Antonio Nomiz was responsible for coining the term psychosurgery. Nomiz’s lobotomy originally began as the drilling of holes into a patients head and destroying tissue in the frontal lobe first by the injection of alcohol. In later years, Nomiz (carried out through the hands of neurosurgeon Pedro Alemeida) , changed his technique by cutting the brain tissue of the frontal lobe using a rotating retractable wire loop called a leucotome. Between November 1935 and February 1936, Nomiz and Alemeida carried out his procedures of a lobotomy on twenty patients, publishing their findings in the same year. He was cited as saying
“The removal of these aberrant and fixed pathological brain circuits, therefore, might lead to some improvement in mental symptoms.” Moniz believed that the brain would be able to adapt to such injury and in essence, repair the damaged pathways.
Another pioneer in the area of the...