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May 26, 1989

Neurologists Join Neurosurgeons in Urging Restraint in Parkinson's Surgery

JAMA. 1989;261(20):2929. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03420200013002

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A SENSE OF DÉJÀ VU permeated recent sessions on brain grafts for Parkinson's disease at the American Federation for Clinical Research in Washington, DC, and the American Academy of Neurology in Chicago, as presenters offered new data while urging their colleagues to go slowly and carefully in undertaking the operation.

The admonitions echoed recent warnings issued at the annual meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons in Washington, DC, 2 weeks earlier, by teams who had transplanted adrenal medullary tissue into the caudate nucleus in several patients. The consensus is that while the procedure is still promising, particularly when fetal brain tissue is grafted, new side effects are continuing to emerge.

At the Washington meeting, Curt Freed, MD, professor of medicine and pharmacology, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Denver, offered a note of promise. Freed reported that the first patient in the United States to receive a graft