Electrical stimulation of the brain may ease obsessive- compulsive disorder in treatment-resistant patients, early data show.

(SLPM Self-care) Fifteen patients with OCD — with symptoms including obsessions, rituals and compulsive counting and washing — had stimulation devices implanted deep in the brain, in a region known as the anterior limb of the internal capsule. Patients experienced a variety of changes, including mood elevation or depression, mild mania, less anxiety, increased alertness, irritability, nausea and decreased OCD symptoms.

Overall, patients reported an improved quality of life, said scientists led by Dr. Ali Rezai of the Cleveland Clinic.

The data were reported in San Diego at a November 2002 meeting of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons.

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