By brain stimulation-induced good mood could calm patients during open-brain surgery. A study in the “Journal of Clinical Investigation suggests at least”.

doctors at the University of Emory in Atlanta (U.S. state of Georgia) found that the Stimulation of a specific Region triggers in the brain instant laughter to the patient, followed by a feeling of peace and happiness. The scientists now hope to be able to use this method in the future, reassure patients that need to be during a brain SURGERY awake. A German expert is sceptical about the approach.

There are surgical interventions on the brain, which make it necessary that the Patient is conscious, for example, if a brain tumor is removed, which is very close to the Vision or the language centre. In the case of a conscious patient, the corresponding functions during surgery by means of eye tests and tasks Language be continuously queried and monitored.

However, such interventions do not mean rare special Stress: “Even well-prepared patients can get during an awake operation in a panic, what can be dangerous,” says neuro-surgeon Kelly, Bijanki, the main author of the study, according to a statement.

The scientists report a 23-year-old epilepsy patient, who suffered from anxiety and depressive phases and their seizures in the University hospital of control. For this control to be mounted in a first engaging electrodes in the brain. To see which areas of the brain an epileptic seizure trigger. During this monitoring, the doctors stimulated with electrical impulses of the belt winding (cingulate Gyrus) of the woman. The belt winding is part of the limbic System. This functional unit of the brain for the processing of emotions Central.

the surgeon teased As the neuro a certain part, showed the patient a happy, relaxed behavior. In a Video, you can see that the woman is able to frown or to smile, even when the doctors ask you to remember a sad Situation. She explains, giggling: “It just feels good.”

The observed effect was then used to calm the patient in a two days later, Operation. In surgery, the Patient is given an anesthesia so that he can hear from the Opening of the skull nothing. After the awakening, the woman was initially in a panic: “When we carried out your cingulate Stimulation, she reported immediately that she felt happy and relaxed. She told jokes about her family, and was able to tolerate the awake procedure successfully”, Bijanki.

In the article, it is reported that the Stimulation had been discontinued during the intervention, unintentionally: The patient became nervous and anxious and was close to tears. After Re-starting the Stimulation feelings; her fear quickly returned and also your cheerfulness returned. This reaction is also carried out Trials with two other patients with epilepsy confirmed.

For Walter Stummer, Director of the clinic for neurosurgery at the University hospital of Münster and member of the management Board of the German society for neurosurgery (DGNC), the ndings are interesting. “However, I’m not sure whether the effort justifies the Benefit.” So a second Operation in addition to the actual intervention was necessary to place the electrode.

in This case, the head of the patient will clamped in a frame, the predetermined coordinate system. Then the correct location for the electrode must be found. “Overall, the risks of such intervention are low. He, however, requires special knowledge and a large, multidisciplinary Team from neurosurgery, neurology and neuro-physiology”, Stummer, who was not involved in the study.

With less effort, the Stimulation of the belt winding would actually be a helpful additional measure. For one, you could calm down particularly anxious patients. The very long guard operations would have to solve, in which the patient continuously, probably for this more bearable. Overall, the neuro-surgery have but in the meantime, some very good medicines and treatment to anxious patients. Mute summarizes thus: “in view of the sophisticated methods we have, I am sceptical as to whether this will prevail.”