Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a surgical treatment administered to improve quality of life in patients with
DBS surgery is performed by inserting a device called a neurostimulator to target specific brain areas. The revolutionary device delivers tiny electrical signals to the neurocircuitry of the brain that is associated with the condition.
Deep Brain Stimulation was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1997. Since then, numerous patients worldwide have had a DBS implant surgery.
There is great success for patients that are unable to control their symptoms through medication and are candidates for DBS implantation. On average, 66% of patients reported a marked improvement in symptoms – allowing for an enhanced quality of life. Even more encouraging, patients with tremor can expect approximately 90% improvement, and those with Parkinson’s Disease can see up to 80% improvement. The reduction in symptoms also allowed some patients to reduce their medications.
When patients aren’t doing well-enough on current treatments, they should be re-evaluated for treatment with DBS.
Patients that have been helped by DBS treatments include those with:
Chronic Pain including conditions such migraines that are not alleviated by non-surgical treatments
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders that are not improved my pharmacologic measures or other conservative measures
Deep brain stimulation (DBS) leads can be placed on one side or both sides of the brain. A battery is placed within the chest wall pocket on one or both sides of the chest, depending on the location of the leads.
Surgery is typically performed in stages:
For this very specific type of functional neurosurgery, it is best to work with a physician that has in-depth experience in movement disorders and DBS implantation. Dr. Snyder is one of a handful physicians on Long Island that performs deep brain stimulation surgery. To date, he has conducted this surgery on over 150 patients in both his Long Island and Toronto practices.
•Has the disease or symptom progression become debilitating and is it interfering with quality of life, including daily functioning and activities?
•Have you and your physician discussed all potential, non-surgical, therapeutic treatment options?
•What do you need to consider for preparatory or post-surgery care needs?
•Is there a location that will make pre/post and day-of surgery convenient for you and your caregivers?
When you meet with the neurosurgical team, ask additional questions, such as:
•Are you a surgical candidate?
•What are the potential benefits and risks of a surgery?
•What will specifically happen during the procedure?
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