Ethical Implications of Brain Stimulation

  • Matthis Synofzik
Reference work entry


Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is an implanted device allowing to modulate selected brain target sites in individuals’ daily life. While it was first tested in the treatment of chronic pain, the main breakthrough was achieved in the treatment of movement disorders. The field of DBS now witnesses an exponential growth in clinical applications and investigations, including diverse psychiatric disorders, behavioral states, neurological orphan diseases, and even enhancement purposes. This leads to fundamental questions on the level of research, clinical and regulatory ethics, which are addressed in this section of the Handbook of Neuroethics. This introductory chapter provides an overview of the indications of DBS and the central ethical issues of the burgeoning field.


Deep Brain Stimulation Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Essential Tremor Federal Drug Administration Primary Dystonia 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Neurology, Centre for Neurology and Hertie-Institute for Clinical Brain ResearchUniversity of TübingenTübingenGermany

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