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Definition of Pallidotomy

Pallidotomy: A surgical operation performed on the globus pallidus to destroy it. The purpose of this operation is to relieve involuntary movements or muscular rigidity, as, for example, in Parkinson's disease.

The globus pallidus is a pale-appearing spherical area in the brain. (Globus is a Latin word meaning a globe or sphere; pallidus refers to its pallor relative to the surrounding brain substance.) The globus pallidus is specifically part of what is called the lentiform nucleus which, in turn, is part of the striate body. The striate body is a component of the basal ganglia that can be seen as large masses of gray matter at the base of the cerebral hemispheres of the brain.

Source: MedTerms™ Medical Dictionary
http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=11437
Last Editorial Review: 6/14/2012

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