Out-of-Body Experience During Awake Craniotomy

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BACKGROUND: The out-of-body experience (OBE), during which a person feels as if he or she is spatially removed from the physical body, is a mystical phenomenon because of its association with near-death experiences. Literature implicates the cortex at the temporoparietal junction (TPJ) as the possible anatomic substrate for OBE. CASE DESCRIPTION: We present a patient who had an out-of-body experience during an awake craniotomy for resection of low-grade glioma. During surgery, stimulation of subcortical white matter in the left TPJ repetitively induced OBEs, in which the patient felt as if she was floating above the operating table looking down on herself. CONCLUSIONS: We repetitively induced OBE by subcortical stimulation near the left TPJ during awake craniotomy. Diffusion tensor imaging tractography implicated the posterior thalamic radiation as a possible substrate for autoscopic phenomena.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
JournalWorld Neurosurgery
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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