Parkinson's & Movement disorders

How and why does Parkinson's disease effect women and men differently?

There is growing evidence that Parkinson's disease (PD) affects women and men differently. In this insightful review, published in the Journal of Parkinson's Disease, scientists present the most recent knowledge about these ...

Neuroscience

Deep brain stimulation for refractory severe tinnitus

Researchers from the University of California San Francisco and Veterans Affairs Health Care System, San Francisco investigated the safety and efficacy of deep brain stimulation in the treatment of refractory severe tinnitus ...

Medical research

Alzheimer's study: Electrostimulation to evoke vivid memories

Alzheimer's disease is one of the most dreaded diagnoses, and the fear is particularly acute among older people. This complex brain disorder, which usually affects older individuals, can cause many cognitive disabilities, ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

An oral splint that can reduce Tourette syndrome tics

Tourette syndrome is a neurological disorder characterized by vocal and motor tics, which can contribute to anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. Researchers in Japan have developed a removable dental appliance that can ...

Psychology & Psychiatry

Brain stimulation for PTSD patients

For 8-million adults who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder in any given year, medication and cognitive therapy have been the treatment protocol. Now, University of Houston assistant professor of electrical engineering ...

Neuroscience

Deep brain stimulation modifies memory

Deep brain stimulation of the cingulate cortex worsens memory recall, according to research in epilepsy patients published in JNeurosci. The technique could be a way to target specific brain areas in the treatment of memory ...

Medical research

Could sound waves bring us smarter medical implants?

Pinned to a wall in Tommaso Melodia's office, next to a stack of wireless technology guidebooks, is a child's illustration: a smiling heart symbol alongside the word "Papa." His office is covered with drawings like these, ...

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Deep brain stimulation

In neurotechnology, deep brain stimulation (DBS) is a surgical treatment involving the implantation of a medical device called a brain pacemaker, which sends electrical impulses to specific parts of the brain. DBS in select brain regions has provided remarkable therapeutic benefits for otherwise treatment-resistant movement and affective disorders such as chronic pain, Parkinson’s disease, tremor and dystonia. Despite the long history of DBS, its underlying principles and mechanisms are still not clear. DBS directly changes brain activity in a controlled manner, its effects are reversible (unlike those of lesioning techniques) and is one of only a few neurosurgical methods that allows blinded studies.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved DBS as a treatment for essential tremor in 1997, for Parkinson's disease in 2002, and dystonia in 2003. DBS is also routinely used to treat chronic pain and has been used to treat various affective disorders, including major depression. While DBS has proven helpful for some patients, there is potential for serious complications and side effects.

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