Deep Brain Stimulation Surgery Treats a Patient Suffering from Advanced Parkinson’s Disease
21 November 2018| Last updated on 24 July 2019
A patient suffering from advanced Parkinson's disease has recently undergone a deep brain stimulation surgery at Mediclinic Al Noor Hospital.
The 52 year old patient who had been suffering from the neurodegenerative disorder, Parkinson’s disease for the past five years, was no longer responding to the three medications with which he was being treated.
This tremendously impacted the patient’s quality of life as his motor functions were deteriorating dramatically; to an extent that he was unable to even walk without difficulty.
Dr. Maher Mansour, Consultant Neurosurgeon at Mediclinic Al Noor Hospital who trained in France for many years, said in a statement following the surgery: “When patients suffer from advanced stages of Parkinson’s disease we are left with very limited options to help relieve the symptoms and maintain quality of life.”
He added: “We usually resort to deep brain stimulation surgery when patients suffer from advanced stages of Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor, dystonia - which is a movement disorder - and in some psychiatric indications.”
Deep brain stimulation is an advanced brain surgery that involves the implantation of a pacemaker-like device which helps send electrical impulses through two electrodes to a specific area in the brain called the subthalmic nucleus to block the nerve signals causing Parkinson’s disease symptoms.
Speaking about the surgery Dr. Mansour said: “On the day of the surgery, the patient underwent a CT scan and MRI that helped us determine where exactly the electrodes will be placed as the subthalmic nucleus is small and sensitive. The electrodes were then placed on the right and left side of the brain, whilst the patient was under local anaesthesia. The patient remains awake in order to evaluate his movement using electrical stimulation.”
He concluded: “The patient is then put under general anaesthesia and a pacemaker is implanted under the skin in the chest area which is used to deliver electrical waves into the brain.”
Following the procedure and using a wireless device, the surgeon programs the pacemaker and increases the stimulation parameters gradually, which will eventually help control the symptoms.”
At the outset, the pacemaker needs to be adjusted on a bi-monthly basis and the frequency eventually reduces to two to four times a year.
The patient is in good health, recovered quickly and was discharged from the hospital three days after surgery. A month post operation and after a few adjustments to the electrical stimulation through the pacemaker, he is now doing much better and most of the symptoms have substantially resolved.