Neurophysiologist José Delgado entered a bullring in 1963 to demonstrate the first example of electronic brain stimulation – on a bull.
He implanted electrodes into the brain of an aggressive bull in 1963. With a radio transmitter in hand, Delgado then entered the bullring with the bull. As the bull started to charge, Delgado pressed a button on the handheld radio transmitter to activate the electrodes remotely, stopping the bull in its tracks, Aeon reports.
During that time, neurosurgery had a dark history and the ethical hazards of brain surgery to treat brain disorders were high. Lobotomies were positively covered and the originators of the procedure even won a Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine in 1949, but the procedure caused serious side effects in which people lost their personalities and abilities. Health professional started to turn away from lobotomies in the 1950s, but the procedures continued well into the 1960s, around the same time Delgado started experimenting with deep brain stimulation.
Now, neurostimulation is being used to treat a number of things, including migraine relief, Parkinson’s tremors, depression, seizures and more. The neurostimulation market was worth an estimated $1.9 billion in 2016 and expected to double to almost $4 billion by 2025, according to a ReportBuyer analysis. The continuously growing range of applications and updates in the technology are contributing to the fast growth.