London: Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) in patients with chronic, severe and treatment-resistant Anorexia Nervosa (anorexia) helps some patients achieve and maintain improvements in body weight, mood, and anxiety, a new study has found.The study is a collaboration between lead author Dr. Nir Lipsman a neurosurgery resident at the University of Toronto and PhD student at the Krembil Neuroscience Centre; Dr. Andres Lozano, a neurosurgeon, at the Krembil Neuroscience Centre of Toronto Western Hospital and a professor and chairman of neurosurgery at the University of Toronto, whose research lab was instrumental in conducting the DBS research; and Dr. Blake Woodside, medical director of Canada`s largest eating disorders program at Toronto General Hospital and a professor of psychiatry at the University of Toronto.The phase one safety trial investigated the procedure in six patients who would likely continue with a chronic illness and/or die a premature death because of the severity of their condition.The study`s participants had an average age of 38, and a mean duration of illness of 18 years. In addition to the anorexia, all patients, except one, also suffered from psychiatric conditions such as major depressive disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder. At the time of the study, all patients currently, or had previously, suffered multiple medical complications related to their anorexia - altogether, the six patients had a history of close to 50 hospitalizations during their illnesses.
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