The brain called the hippocampus might play a role in seizures

By the time he turned twenty-seven, H.M. was desperate. Anticonvulsive drugs hadn’t helped. He was smart, but couldn’t hold a job. He still lived with his parents. H .M. wanted a normal existence. So he sought help from a physician whose tolerance for experimentation outweighed his fear of malpractice. Studies had suggested that an area of the brain called the hippocampus might play a role in seizures. When the doctor proposed cutting into H .M.’s head, lifting up the front portion of his brain, and, with a small straw, sucking out the hippocampus and some surrounding tissue from the interior of his skull, H.M. gave his consent.

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