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December 1936

Tentatives opératoires dans le traitement de certaines psychoses.

Arch NeurPsych. 1936;36(6):1413. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1936.02260120260022

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This book reports a detailed study of twenty patients on whom Moniz performed partial destruction of the white matter of the prefrontal area on both sides. Its importance can scarcely be overestimated, and one will wait impatiently for time to elapse, so that a follow-up report can be made on the eventual outcome. Certainly, the immediate results (the operations were performed late in 1935 and early in 1936) are striking. Moniz based his experiments on the theory that in certain so-called functional psychoses there is fixation of certain patterns of relationship among various groups of cells. The cell bodies may remain normal and their processes show no anatomic alterations, but their multiple connections, variable in normal persons, may develop more or less fixed arrangements, which may lie at the bottom of the persistent ideas and delusions characteristic of certain morbid psychic states.

The operations consisted in the injection of absolute

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