Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Deep Brain Stimulator Placement And Brain Cell Harvesting Offer Relief And Hope For Parkinson's Disease Patients

Date:
August 27, 1998
Source:
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Summary:
A new type of brain surgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center's Neurofunctional Surgery Center, done while the patient is awake, is helping to control tremors in Parkinson's Disease patients.

LOS ANGELES (August 23, 1998) - A new type of brain surgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center's Neurofunctional Surgery Center, done while the patient is awake, is helping to control tremors in Parkinson's Disease patients like Dennis Turner, 56, a former engineer at Southern California Edison's San Onofre Nuclear Generating System. Stereotactic-Guided Placement of a Deep Brain Stimulator has been available in Europe for several years, but only received FDA approval last year for use in the United States.In addition to implanting a deep brain stimulator during the Aug. 11 surgery, physicians harvested some of Turner's brain cells, which will be genetically engineered and implanted at a future date. Researchers hope that the genetically engineered cells will replace defective cells, thereby offering the possibility of a cure for this disease which presently has none.

According to Michel F. Levesque, M.D., Director of Cedars-Sinai's Neurofunctional Surgery Center, the state-of-the-art procedure utilizes magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and a stereotactic frame to identify the exact location in the mid-brain that is causing tremors. The frame is placed on the patient's head like a crown. Coordinates are calculated digitally through a computer, showing the neurosurgeon precisely where to insert a battery-powered electrode (stimulator) that will send impulses to the thalamus -- the part of the brain that activates the tremors associated with Parkinson's Disease.

Once the target area has been identified, a 14mm hole -- about the size of a 50-cent coin -- is drilled in the crown of the patient's head, and an external voltage stimulator (test electrode) is carefully threaded between the two hemispheres of the brain to the thalamus. This electrode enables neurosurgeons to do extensive stimulation testing during surgery to determine precisely where within the thalamus to position the stimulator. The testing must be done while the patient is awake so that he or she can move his hands, fingers or arms when asked to do so, or respond verbally to questions asked by the surgical team. "As we move the test electrode, we watch the patient closely to identify exactly when the tremor has completely stopped. Then we know to exactly where to place the stimulator," says Dr. Levesque. Although awake, the patient does not experience pain during this testing, only tingling sensations.

To "double-check" the location, Dr. Levesque also does a Micro Recording or Internal Brain EEG. Working with two neurophysiologists who designed the Micro Recording Electrodes, he takes this extra measure to be absolutely certain that he has located the nucleus of the thalamus. Once the team is satisfied that the location is exact, the patient is given a general anesthesia, and surgeons tunnel down from the top of the head to just below the clavicle in order to insert a tiny generator - the size of a business card - in the patient's chest. This generator is battery-powered and is turned on and off by the patient with a magnetic device. "Many patients do not experience tremors during sleep, so they like to turn off the generator when they go to bed and conserve the battery," says Dr. Levesque. Batteries usually have to be replaced after 10 years, but can last longer if they are not operated continuously.

The entire procedure usually takes about three to four hours. After surgery, the patient typically spends one night in the Cedars-Sinai Intensive Care Unit for observation, has a CT scan the next morning, and then goes home in a day or two. A check-up five days after surgery is followed by a two-week check-up, at which time the generator is turned on using the magnet. While many physicians turn on the generator at the time of surgery, Dr. Levesque prefers to wait about two weeks to give the patient time to recover from the surgery and for any swelling to diminish.

At this two-week check-up, Dr. Levesque also programs the generator using a special computer in his office. "The computer programs the stimulation levels," says Dr. Levesque. "Different people require varying levels of stimulation. Also, because Parkinson's Disease is a progressive disorder, additional programming will likely be needed to adjust the stimulation levels."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. "Deep Brain Stimulator Placement And Brain Cell Harvesting Offer Relief And Hope For Parkinson's Disease Patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 27 August 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/08/980827074627.htm>.
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. (1998, August 27). Deep Brain Stimulator Placement And Brain Cell Harvesting Offer Relief And Hope For Parkinson's Disease Patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/08/980827074627.htm
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. "Deep Brain Stimulator Placement And Brain Cell Harvesting Offer Relief And Hope For Parkinson's Disease Patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/08/980827074627.htm (accessed July 24, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

AFP (July 24, 2014) America's death penalty debate raged Thursday after it took nearly two hours for Arizona to execute a prisoner who lost a Supreme Court battle challenging the experimental lethal drug cocktail. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
China's Ageing Millions Look Forward to Bleak Future

China's Ageing Millions Look Forward to Bleak Future

AFP (July 24, 2014) China's elderly population is expanding so quickly that children struggle to look after them, pushing them to do something unexpected in Chinese society- move their parents into a nursing home. Duration: 02:07 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins