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Neurology. 2004 Sep 28;63(6):968-74.

Cosmetic neurology: the controversy over enhancing movement, mentation, and mood.

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Department of Neurology and the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience, The University of Pennsylvania, 3 West Gates, 3400 Spruce St., Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


Advances in cognitive neuroscience and neuropharmacology are yielding exciting treatments for neurologic diseases. Many of these treatments are also likely to have uses for people without disease. Here, I review the ways in which medicine might make bodies and brains function better by modulating motor, cognitive, and affective systems. These potential "quality of life" interventions raise ethical concerns, some related to the individual and others related to society. Despite these concerns, I argue that major restraints on the development of cosmetic neurology are not likely. Neurologists and other clinicians are likely to encounter patient-consumers who view physicians as gatekeepers in their own pursuit of happiness.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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