Last Resort: Psychosurgery and the Limits of Medicine

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Cambridge University Press, Aug 8, 2002 - Medical - 555 pages
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During the 1940s and 1950s, tens of thousands of Americans underwent some form of psychosurgery; that is, their brains were operated upon for the putative purpose of treating mental illness. From today's perspective, such medical practices appear foolhardy at best, perhaps even barbaric; most commentators thus have seen in the story of lobotomy an important warning about the kinds of hazards that society will face whenever incompetent or malicious physicians are allowed to overstep the boundaries of valid medical science. Last Resort challenges the previously accepted psychosurgery story and raises new questions about what we should consider its important lessons.
  

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Contents

A Stab in the Dark
1
The Problem of Mental Disorder
18
John F Fulton and the Origins
47
holiday
59
Initial Impressions of the Operation
102
33ab Diagram of a Freeman and Watts standard
136
Somatic Therapy and State Hospital
147
States by decade
155
comparison of psychosurgery
295
The Quest for a Better
318
literature 19361955
319
Psychiatrys Evolution as a Science
362
The New Synthesis
401
Walter Freemans postcard greetings
406
Appendix
443
Notes
453

Why Psychosurgery Worked in 1949
194
Psychosurgery and the Art
236

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