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[luh-bot-uh-mee, loh-] /ləˈbɒt ə mi, loʊ-/

noun, plural lobotomies. Surgery.
the operation of cutting into a lobe, as of the brain or the lung.
noun (pl) -mies
a surgical incision into a lobe of any organ
Also called prefrontal leucotomy. a surgical interruption of one or more nerve tracts in the frontal lobe of the brain: used in the treatment of intractable mental disorders

1936, coined from lobe (in the brain sense) + medical suffix -tomy. Figurative use is attested from 1953.

Now I guess I’ll have to tell ’em
That I got no cerebellum
[Ramones, “Teenage Lobotomy,” 1977]

lobotomy lo·bot·o·my (lə-bŏt’ə-mē, lō-)

Surgical incision into the frontal lobe of the brain to sever one or more nerve tracts, a technique formerly used to treat certain psychiatric disorders but now rarely performed.
lobotomy [(luh-bot-uh-mee, loh-bot-uh-mee)]

A surgical incision into one or more of the nerve masses in the front of the brain. A lobotomy may be performed for the relief of certain mental disorders, although it has been largely abandoned in favor of less radical treatments.

Note: Because people who have had a lobotomy often become quite passive after the operation, the term is often used to refer to someone who shows a lack of response or reaction: “She was so tired she just sat there as if she had been lobotomized.”

1. What a hacker subjected to formal management training is said to have undergone. At IBM and elsewhere this term is used by both hackers and low-level management; the latter doubtless intend it as a joke.
2. The act of removing the processor from a microcomputer in order to replace or upgrade it. Some very cheap clone systems are sold in “lobotomised” form – everything but the brain.
[Jargon File]


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