Do doctors still perform lesioning brain surgeries on people with dystonia?

Previously, surgically creating permanent lesions in the brain was the only available treatment for severe cases of generalized dystonia. Since the development of deep brain stimulation, lesioning brain surgeries are done less frequently. However, these approaches are not obsolete and may be options for some patients, especially given the vast advancements in brain imaging and targeting areas of the brain with greater precision.

Doctors use deep brain stimulation on people with dystonia rather than lesioning brain surgery. In the fifties and sixties, removal of the thalami of the brain was performed but left people with unacceptable complications as a result, such as paralysis, spasticity, further difficulty with gait, inability to swallow and difficulty with speech. Therefore this is no longer performed.

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