BPoD has moved!

BPoD has recently changed our domain name - we can now be found at bpod.org.uk

Please update your bookmarks!

Now in our 13th year of bringing you beautiful imagery from biomedical science every day

Search the archive of over 4000 images

Epidemic of Hope

Deep brain stimulation via implanted electrodes to treat opioid addiction

05 January 2020

Epidemic of Hope

Since the age of 15, Gerod Buckhalter has been sober for no more than four months at a time. Now 33 years old, he’s become the first person in the United States to have electrodes implanted into his brain in an attempt to treat his severe opioid addiction. He’s one of over ten million people thought to be misusing opioids across the country, in what is being called an epidemic of addiction. Opioids include heroin and prescription pain relievers. Gerod was awake throughout the seven-hour operation to insert wires into his brain’s reward circuit. The deep brain stimulator will run from a battery behind his collarbone and will stimulate the release of dopamine. It’s hoped that this will reduce the cravings that have proven resistant to standard treatments. Similar devices are being developed as possible treatments for Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy and psychiatric illnesses.

Written by Deborah Oakley

Search The Archive

Submit An Image

Follow on Tumblr

Follow on Instagram

What is BPoD?

BPoD stands for Biomedical Picture of the Day. Managed by the MRC Laboratory of Medical Sciences until Jul 2023, it is now run independently by a dedicated team of scientists and writers. The website aims to engage everyone, young and old, in the wonders of biology, and its influence on medicine. The ever-growing archive of more than 4000 research images documents over a decade of progress. Explore the collection and see what you discover. Images are kindly provided for inclusion on this website through the generosity of scientists across the globe.

Read More

BPoD is also available in Catalan at www.bpod.cat with translations by the University of Valencia.