Neurological Surgeries to Improve the Lives of Patients With Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Obsessive compulsive disorder, more commonly referred to by its acronym OCD, is an anxiety disorder that is comprised of irrational thoughts, ideas, and fears that frequently leads to repetitive behavior. People with OCD feel compelled to act out compulsive tendencies even when they realize they are unreasonable.
A research study conducted at University Laval in Quebec, Canada introduced a type of brain surgery that could be a fairly effective option for people with obsessive compulsive disorder and who have had little success with other treatments.
ONE Brain and Spine Center is a multifaceted facility that incorporates neurosurgery and orthopedics to best facilitate patients with spine and brain conditions. Dr. Burak Ozgur utilizes the most effective treatment options to efficiently relieve brain and spine pain. Irvine is the home of the ONE Center, and the entire medical staff provides exceptional care for the residents of surrounding California areas.
The study assessed the results of 19 patients who underwent a psychosurgery called bilateral anterior capsulotomy between 1997 and 2009. The surgery itself causes metabolic decreases in the internal capsule region of the brain. These metabolic changes reduce symptoms of OCD.
Prior to the surgery, the patients were assessed and, on average, reported a 34/40 on the severity of their condition. This average score is considered severe OCD. After the surgery, the average test score was 23/40, which is considered moderate OCD.
The study found the following results:

  • 37% of the patients fully responded to the surgery- their measurement score improved by 35%
  • 10% of the patients partially responded- their score improved by 25%
  • 7 Years after the surgery: 3 patients fully recovered, 3 patients had minimal symptoms

The study did not include a control group and researchers theorize that some of the improvements were the result of a placebo effect.
In 2009, the Food and Drug Administration approved the use for a more employed surgery called deep brain stimulation. The surgical treatment involves a brain pacemaker that is implanted and sends electrical impulses to specific regions of the brain. Unlike the bilateral anterior capsulotomy surgery, deep brain stimulation is reversible and patients can turn on and off the device as they wish.
About 20-30 percent of patients who have obsessive compulsive disorder did not see improvements with medication or behavioral therapies. Michael Schulder, M.D., vice chairman of neurosurgery at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, New York, explains that psychosurgeries are much more refined and regulated than they were in the past. Brain imaging technology and other applications are available to assist surgeons to ensure a smooth, hitch-free surgeries.
To find out more about the treatments ONE Brain and Spine Center offer to improve brain disorders, call and schedule an appointment today. The entire medical team at ONE works to develop the best possible treatment plans for each and every patient.
ONE Brain & Spine Center is the premier spine and brain center in Irvine, California, offering minimally invasive spine surgeries and minimally invasive orthopedic surgeries. For more information or to make an appointment, please call (949) 383-4190.
The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material.

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