Deep Brain Stimulation News and Research

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Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a surgical procedure used to treat a variety of disabling neurological symptoms—most commonly the debilitating symptoms of Parkinson’s disease (PD), such as tremor, rigidity, stiffness, slowed movement, and walking problems. The procedure is also used to treat essential tremor, a common neurological movement disorder. At present, the procedure is used only for patients whose symptoms cannot be adequately controlled with medications.

DBS uses a surgically implanted, battery-operated medical device called a neurostimulator—similar to a heart pacemaker and approximately the size of a stopwatch—to deliver electrical stimulation to targeted areas in the brain that control movement, blocking the abnormal nerve signals that cause tremor and PD symptoms.

Before the procedure, a neurosurgeon uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) scanning to identify and locate the exact target within the brain where electrical nerve signals generate the PD symptoms. Some surgeons may use microelectrode recording—which involves a small wire that monitors the activity of nerve cells in the target area—to more specifically identify the precise brain target that will be stimulated. Generally, these targets are the thalamus, subthalamic nucleus, and globus pallidus.
Study shows that tDCS and physical therapy improve walking ability in patients with Parkinson's disease

Study shows that tDCS and physical therapy improve walking ability in patients with Parkinson's disease

Study: DBS shows promise for treating patients with post-stroke pain syndrome

Study: DBS shows promise for treating patients with post-stroke pain syndrome

Making brain implants smaller could eliminate scarring, extend life of devices

Making brain implants smaller could eliminate scarring, extend life of devices

New research reveals causes of weight gain after deep brain stimulation in Parkinsonian patients

New research reveals causes of weight gain after deep brain stimulation in Parkinsonian patients

Study evaluates effectiveness of deep brain stimulation for treatment-resistant schizophrenia patients

Study evaluates effectiveness of deep brain stimulation for treatment-resistant schizophrenia patients

Caltech researchers discover brain region that judges intensity, ambiguity of facial expressions

Caltech researchers discover brain region that judges intensity, ambiguity of facial expressions

Researchers design first light-activated drug for treatment of pain

Researchers design first light-activated drug for treatment of pain

Study finds thalamic DBS to be safe, effective treatment for young adults with Tourette syndrome

Study finds thalamic DBS to be safe, effective treatment for young adults with Tourette syndrome

Researchers develop stable brain implant based on anti-inflammatory coating

Researchers develop stable brain implant based on anti-inflammatory coating

Noninvasive dTMS technique helps obese people lose weight by changing gut microbiota composition

Noninvasive dTMS technique helps obese people lose weight by changing gut microbiota composition

Experts to present diverse advances in neuromodulation at INS congress

Experts to present diverse advances in neuromodulation at INS congress

Man with quadriplegia uses implanted technologies to restore arm and hand movements

Man with quadriplegia uses implanted technologies to restore arm and hand movements

Deep brain stimulation could be effective treatment option for patients with severe depressions

Deep brain stimulation could be effective treatment option for patients with severe depressions

MIT researchers develop precise technique to measure dopamine in the brain

MIT researchers develop precise technique to measure dopamine in the brain

Deep brain stimulation may help improve mental, physical health in patients with anorexia nervosa

Deep brain stimulation may help improve mental, physical health in patients with anorexia nervosa

IDSA guidelines: Team approach vital to successful treatment of complex neurological infections

IDSA guidelines: Team approach vital to successful treatment of complex neurological infections

New infusion therapy may help avoid debilitating symptoms in Parkinson's disease patients

New infusion therapy may help avoid debilitating symptoms in Parkinson's disease patients

Researchers find chemical link between two problem proteins that cause Parkinson's disease

Researchers find chemical link between two problem proteins that cause Parkinson's disease

Deep brain stimulation can reduce heroin relapse in rat models of addiction, TSRI study shows

Deep brain stimulation can reduce heroin relapse in rat models of addiction, TSRI study shows

Tau pathology underlies deterioration of spatial cognition in Alzheimer's disease

Tau pathology underlies deterioration of spatial cognition in Alzheimer's disease