Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Parkinson's treatment shows positive results in clinical testing

Date:
January 11, 2012
Source:
University of Florida
Summary:
Deep brain stimulation -- also known as DBS -- is effective at improving motor symptoms and quality of life in patients with advanced Parkinson's disease, according to new research.

Researchers from the University of Florida and 14 additional medical centers reported results in the online version of The Lancet Neurology journal indicating that deep brain stimulation -- also known as DBS -- is effective at improving motor symptoms and quality of life in patients with advanced Parkinson's disease.

The study, sponsored by St. Jude Medical Inc., tested the safety and effectiveness of a constant current DBS device developed by St. Jude Medical to manage the symptoms of Parkinson's disease. The device aimed to reduce tremors, improve the slowness of movement, decrease the motor disability of the disease and reduce involuntary movements called dyskinesia, which are a common side effect of Parkinson's drugs.

After treatment, analysis of 136 patient diaries revealed longer periods of effective symptom control -- known as "on time" -- without involuntary movements. "On time" for patients who received stimulation increased by an average of 4.27 hours compared with an increase of 1.77 hours in the group without stimulation. Patients also noted overall improvements in the quality of their daily activities, mobility, emotional state, social support and physical comfort.

"I think it is safe to say since dopamine treatment emerged in the 1960s, DBS has been the single biggest symptomatic breakthrough for Parkinson patients who have experienced the fluctuations associated with levodopa therapy," said Dr. Michael S. Okun, first author of the study, administrative director of the UF College of Medicine's Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration, and the National Medical Director for the National Parkinson Foundation. "This study validates the use of mild electrical currents delivered to specific brain structures in order to improve Parkinson's disease in select patients with advanced symptoms, and additionally, it explored a new stimulation paradigm. Future improvements in devices and the delivery systems for DBS will hopefully provide exciting new opportunities for Parkinson's sufferers."

Only patients who have had Parkinson's disease for five years or more were included in the study. They were randomly assigned to a control group that delayed the onset of stimulation for three months, or a group whose stimulation began shortly after surgery. All patients were followed for 12 months.

The deep brain stimulation procedure involves surgeons implanting small electrodes into an area of the patient's brain that controls movement. The electrodes are connected to a device precisely programmed to use mild electrical current to modulate problematic brain signals that result in movement problems.

Today's voltage-controlled DBS devices deliver pulses of current that vary slightly with surrounding tissue changes. The DBS devices tested in this study are intended to provide more accurate delivery and control of the electrical pulses.

"We are committed to driving research that will provide solutions for physicians and their patients whose needs are currently unmet," said Rohan Hoare, president of St. Jude Medical Neuromodulation Division. "These results are significant as they offer evidence that stimulation with the Libra constant current system enabled patients to have better motor control and an improvement in their quality of life when compared to the control group."

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the use of DBS for Parkinson's disease in 2002. At least 500,000 people in the United States suffer from Parkinson's with about 50,000 new cases reported annually, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. These numbers are expected to increase as the average age of the population rises.

"The study answered some very important questions concerning cognition and mood with lead implantation (alone) versus implantation with stimulation. It also refutes the hypothesis that DBS increases depressive symptoms," said Dr. Gordon H. Baltuch, a professor of neurosurgery in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and a study author. "The group's results also showed a decrease in the infection rate to 4 percent from previously published 10 percent. It shows that American neurosurgeons and neurologists with their industry partners are improving the safety of this procedure and working in a collaborative fashion."

Comparable with other large DBS studies, the most common serious adverse event revealed was infection, which occurred in five patients. Likewise, some participants also reported an increase in the occurrence of slurred speech, known as dysarthria.

"Technology is on the move, and we expect to see continued improvements to DBS approaches, equipment and materials," said Okun, who is also affiliated with UF's McKnight Brain Institute. "DBS has set the bar high for the development of new therapies for advanced Parkinson's disease patients. DBS will be the standard of care gene therapy and other cell-based therapies that are now being conceived will be measured against, and this will hopefully translate into significant improvements in what we can offer our patients."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Florida. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Michael S Okun, Bruno V Gallo, George Mandybur, Jonathan Jagid, Kelly D Foote, Fredy J Revilla, Ron Alterman, Joseph Jankovic, Richard Simpson, Fred Junn, Leo Verhagen, Jeff E Arle, Blair Ford, Robert R Goodman, R Malcolm Stewart, Stacy Horn, Gordon H Baltuch, Brian H Kopell, Frederick Marshall, DeLea Peichel, Rajesh Pahwa, Kelly E Lyons, Alexander I Trφster, Jerrold L Vitek, Michele Tagliati. Subthalamic deep brain stimulation with a constant-current device in Parkinson's disease: an open-label randomised controlled trial. The Lancet Neurology, 2012; DOI: 10.1016/S1474-4422(11)70308-8

Cite This Page:

University of Florida. "Parkinson's treatment shows positive results in clinical testing." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 January 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120111104056.htm>.
University of Florida. (2012, January 11). Parkinson's treatment shows positive results in clinical testing. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120111104056.htm
University of Florida. "Parkinson's treatment shows positive results in clinical testing." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120111104056.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) — Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) — Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Newsy (July 30, 2014) — The Peace Corps is one of several U.S.-based organizations to pull workers out of West Africa because of the Ebola outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Newsy (July 30, 2014) — Health officials say 2,000 deaths occur each year in the U.S. due to weather, but it's excessive heat and cold that claim the most lives. Video provided by Newsy
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