The Tragic History of Surgery for Schizophrenia

A compelling article in the Journal of Medical Biography recounts the story of Bayard Holmes and Henry Cotton, two American “surgeon-psychiatrists” who believed that they could cure schizophrenia by removing parts of their patients’ intestines (and other organs).

What’s more, both men tested their treatments on their own children – with tragic results. The article is by Jonathan Davidson of Duke University.

Holmes and Cotton had a theory to justify their extreme cures: autointoxica

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