Deep brain stimulation is a type of functional neurosurgery or neuromodulation. It is done by implanting electrodes into a specific area of the brain. The electrodes release electrical impulses into the brain, which helps to regulate abnormal activity. The electrical impulses are controlled by a device that is placed in the upper part of the chest, similar to a pacemaker. This device is connected to the brain via wires that run under the skin.
Like all surgeries, deep brain stimulation is not likely to be the first treatment you have tried to cure or minimize the symptoms of your condition. Deep brain stimulation is usually only offered to patients that has failed to have a positive effect from treatments such a medication.
This is still a fairly new treatment, meaning that there is still a lot to learn about the benefits. Here are some of the most common conditions that can be treated with deep brain stimulation:
Dystonia (Uncontrollable muscle contractions0
Epilepsy (An abnormality in the brain that causes seizures)
Tremor (uncontrollable movement)
Deep brain stimulation is also being trialed for treatment of conditions including:
Traumatic brain injuries
This procedure is considered a minimally invasive and low-risk treatment option, as there is no need to make a large incision mark. However, it is still important that you understand all the possible complications before you go ahead with the treatment. Possible complications include:
Bleeding on the brain
After a few weeks, once you have started to recover, your device will be turned. This can cause temporary side effects; however, it is likely that these will go once the settings have been optimized for you (this can be a few months before you find the best settings).
The way that you use your deep brain stimulation machine will likely be different from other patients as it is unique for you condition and symptoms that you experience.
What does deep brain stimulation do?
Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a neurosurgical procedure that uses implanted electrodes and electrical stimulation to treat movement disorders associated with Parkinson’s disease (PD), essential tremor, dystonia and other neurological conditions.
What is deep brain stimulation and how does it work?
How DBS Works. DBS is a surgical procedure that delivers high-frequency electrical stimulation to precise areas of the brain. This is done by implanting a thin wire with electrodes at the tip. The electrodes are precisely placed into a brain site that carries the abnormal signals producing the symptoms.
Why is deep brain stimulation bad?
An individual who has undergone DBS may experience movement-related adverse events such as a loss of balance, marginal paralysis, jolts and shocks, and reduced coordination. It is not uncommon for patients to experience heightened tremors in the aftermath of DBS surgery
What is the success rate of deep brain stimulation?
CONCLUSIONS: DBS for PD is associated with a 10-year survival rate of 51%. Survey data suggest that while DBS does not halt disease progression in PD, it provides durable symptomatic relief and allows many individuals to maintain ADLs over long-term follow-up greater than 10 years