A Case of HysteriaMain MenuThe Altogether Shocking History of Women’s Mental HealthThe Anatomy of InsanityThe Wandering WombTheater Of The HystericsFather Freud Knows BestThis Place Will Make You CrazyThe Water CureHysterical ParoxysmShe Must Be MadShock The Pain AwayJust A Touch Of ElectricityA Home For Inebriates And The InsaneThe Inmates Aren't Running The AsylumStories From The SanatoriumAgnes RichardsThe Ladies of RockhavenBaby BluesMaybe She's Born With ItStay Subservient!The Cost of Going Crazy in CaliforniaTill Commitment Do We PartAdditional Artifacts from Patton State Hospital, ca. 1930-1950Anne-Marie Maxwell
This Lobotomy Won't Hurt A Bit
1media/Header Image - This Lobotomy Wont Hurt A Bit.jpg2020-04-01T15:05:44-07:00Anne-Marie Maxwell326ac6eff123bb3f77fb517c66299be8b435b4793698012image_header9782642020-04-27T09:19:51-07:00Tyson Gaskill93cb401bee8f73160b4c4378060de7643c42eee9In 1888, Swiss physician Gottlieb Burckhardt found that some insane asylum patients became calmer when parts of their brains were surgically removed. Treating neurological issues in the operating room began in earnest in the 1930s, when doctors Walter Freeman and James Watts performed the first prefrontal lobotomy in America on Kansas housewife Alice Hood Hammatt. The two widely promoted the surgery’s benefits, although in 1941 they botched a procedure on Rosemary Kennedy, rendering her an invalid. Freeman later refined the infamous transorbital or “ice pick” lobotomy, in which the patient was anesthetized by electric shock, and a sharp instrument was hammered into the brain through the eye sockets. The pick was then manipulated back and forth, severing connections in the prefrontal cortex. By the end of the 1940s, lobotomies were being performed at medical institutions across the country, mostly on women. One husband of a patient vouched for the operation’s success by declaring her “more normal than she had ever been.” In 1954, a new antipsychotic drug named Thorazine quickly became the preferred treatment for psychoses.
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1media/36c-M_thumb.jpg2020-04-16T15:05:05-07:00Anne-Marie Maxwell326ac6eff123bb3f77fb517c66299be8b435b479Lobotomy pick. On loan from Patton State Hospital1Patton State Hospital Museummedia/36c-M.jpgplain2020-04-16T15:05:05-07:0020200413131136+0000Anne-Marie Maxwell326ac6eff123bb3f77fb517c66299be8b435b479