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Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson's Disease

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When Will I Be Able to Go Home After the Deep Brain Stimulation Procedure?

The average hospital stay for the first part of the deep brain stimulation surgery is two to three days. For the second part of the surgery one week later, you will be in the hospital for less than 24 hours.

How Should I Care for the Surgical Area Once I Am Home?

  • Your stitches or staples will be removed seven to 10 days after surgery.
  • Each of the pin sites should be kept covered with band-aids until they are dry. These should be changed every day as necessary.
  • You will be able to wash your head with a damp cloth, avoiding the surgical area.
  • You may shampoo your hair the day after your stitches or staples are removed, but only very gently.
  • You should not scratch or irritate the wound areas.

Will I Have to Limit Activity Following Deep Brain Stimulation Surgery?

  • You should not engage in light activities for two weeks after deep brain stimulation surgery. This includes housework and sexual activity.
  • You should not engage in heavy activities for four to six weeks after surgery. This includes jogging, swimming, or any physical education classes. Anything strenuous should be avoided to allow your surgical wound to heal properly. If you have any questions about activities, call your doctor before performing them.
  • You should not lift more than five pounds for at least two weeks.
  • Depending on the type of work you do, you may return to work within four to six weeks.

Post Surgery Warning:

Call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms after deep brain stimulation surgery:

  • Severe and persistent headaches
  • Bleeding from your incision
  • Redness or increased swelling in the area of the incision
  • Loss of vision
  • A sudden change in vision
  • A persistent fever or chills

Can I Use Electrical Devices?

While you should be able to use most electronic devices, you should be aware that:

  • Some devices, such as theft detectors and screening devices, like those found in airports, department stores and public libraries, can cause your neurotransmitter to switch on or off. Usually, this only causes an uncomfortable sensation. However, your symptoms could get worse suddenly. Always carry the identification card given to you. With this, you may request assistance to bypass those devices.
  • You will be able to use home appliances, computers, and cell phones. They do not usually interfere with your implanted stimulator.
  • You will be provided with a magnet to activate and deactivate your stimulator. This magnet may damage televisions, credit cards, and computer discs. Always keep it at least one foot away from these items.

 

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WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Jon Glass on August 13, 2012
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