Chronic recurrent thalamic stimulation has been effective in alleviating a variety of movement disorders. In contrast to thalamic lesions, it is preferred for the treatment of intractable motor disorders in low-risk elderly patients and patients with diffuse brain lesions secondary to trauma. Abnormal diencephalic electrical discharges have been observed and thought to be associated, in some way, with either generating or sustaining the movement abnormalities. The beneficial effects are ascribed to an electrophysiologic functional ablation of the discharging systems. This interpretation is based on the observation that the diencephalic discharges are attenuated by the applied stimulation and that the beneficial effects are reversible even after several months of applied therapeutic stimulation.