Stone Age

During the Stone Age, approximately 2 million years ago in Europe and 30,000 years ago in the Americas, it was believed that evil spirits caused mental illnesses or abnormal behaviors. The most common treatment during this time period was trepanning. The process of trepanation was done by drilling holes into the skull of the possessed person, therefore allowing the evil spirits to leave (Durand & Barlow, 2005).


Arnott, R., Finger, S., & Smith, C. (2003). Pre-Columbian skull trepanation in North America. In R. Arnott, S. Finger, & C. Smith (Eds.) Trepanation: History, Discovery, Theory, (pp. 240-244). The Netherlands: Swets & Zeitlinger Publishers.

.Clower, W. T., & Finger, S. (2001) Discovering trepanation: The Contribution of Paul Broca. Neurosurgery, 49, 1417- 1425.

.Durand, V. M., & Barlow, D. H. (2005). Introduction to abnormal psychology and the DSM-IV-TR. In M. Taflinger (Ed.) Essentials of Abnormal Psychology Fourth Edition (pp. 1-15). Belmont, CA, US: Wadsworth Publishing.

.Kidd, G. E. (1946). Trepanation amount the early Indians of British Columbia. Men and Books 55, 513- 516.

.Missios, S. (2007) Hippocrates, Galen, and the uses of trepanation in the ancient classical world. Neurosurgical Focus, 23, 1-9.

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