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How does deep brain stimulation for Parkinson's disease work?

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Deep brain stimulation is a treatment for Parkinson's disease. It can ease tremors and stiffness and make it easier to walk. It uses a small battery-powered device placed inside your chest sends electrical pulses to your brain. The pulses block nerve signals that cause Parkinson's symptoms.

A DBS system has four parts:

  • A thin wire, called a lead, that's placed in the part of your brain causing symptoms
  • A pulse generator, like a pacemaker, that sends tiny electrical signals to the lead
  • A wire that connects the lead to the pulse generator
  • A remote control to program the system -- the only part outside your body

SOURCES:

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke: "Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson's Disease Fact Sheet."

Okun, M. , National Parkinson's Foundation, 2017. Deep Brain Stimulation: Practical Guide for Patients and Families

Parkinson's Disease Foundation: "Surgical Treatments."

Reviewed by Neil Lava on August 01, 2017

SOURCES:

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke: "Deep Brain Stimulation for Parkinson's Disease Fact Sheet."

Okun, M. , National Parkinson's Foundation, 2017. Deep Brain Stimulation: Practical Guide for Patients and Families

Parkinson's Disease Foundation: "Surgical Treatments."

Reviewed by Neil Lava on August 01, 2017

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How should I prepare for deep brain stimulation for Parkinson's disease?

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