What is Parkinson’s Disease?
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive, chronic neurological condition. The cardinal symptoms include:
- Rigidity (stiffness)
- Bradykinesia (slowness)
The symptoms result from the deterioration of a small group of cells in the brain, called the substantia nigra. This gradual deterioration also causes a decrease of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that nerves use to send signals to your body from your brain. The disruption in dopamine levels results in the physical symptoms of the disease.
How experienced is the Barrow team in treating Parkinson’s Disease patients with DBS?
We’ve been performing deep brain stimulation (DBS) for as long as it’s been available. Patients from around the country come to see us for this specific condition.
Good outcomes rely on:
1.) Patient selection
2.) Safe and accurate surgery
3.) Optimal programming of the neurostimulator.
Our partner neurologists are experts at incorporating this therapy to optimize their care of patients with Parkinson’s Disease.
For Parkinson’s patients, when is DBS appropriate?
Good candidates include patients who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s for at least four years, and have had motor complications of medical therapy (i.e., motor fluctuations, dyskinesias, refractory tremor) for at least four months. Candidacy needs to be validated by a neurologist who is a specialist in movement disorders.