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Things to Know About Parkinson’s Disease & Deep Brain Stimulation

Dr. Manas Kumar Panigrahi, Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Things to Know About Parkinson’s Disease & Deep Brain Stimulation 

Q. What is Parkinson’s disease? 

Parkinson’s is progressive disorder in which your brain stops producing chemicals mainly dopamine which control the movements of the body. 


Q. What are the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease?

Symptoms include Shaking, Slowness, Freezing, Muscle stiffness, Small handwriting, Dizziness when standing, Impaired sleep, Balance, Posture, Decreased facial expressions, Speech and Swallowing difficulty.


Q. What causes Parkinson’s disease and can Parkinson’s disease be prevented?

Causes can be a combination of Genetic, Environmental and Lifestyle influences. It begins in middle or late life, and the risk increases with age. People usually develop the disease around the age of 60 or older, men are more affected than women. Having a close relative with Parkinson's disease increases the chances that you'll develop the disease. Ongoing exposure to herbicides and pesticides may slightly increase your risk of Parkinson's disease. Prevention always remains a mystery, Because the cause of Parkinson's is unknown, regular aerobic exercise might reduce the risk of Parkinson's disease.


Q. What are the Treatment options for Parkinson’s disease?

Symptoms of Parkinson's disease can be treated using various methods including medication, Therapies and Deep Brain Stimulation, however there is no cure for the disease.


Q. What is Deep Brain Stimulation?

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) be often described as pacemaker for the brain, sending electrical signals to the brain. During DBS surgery, Neurosurgeons use microelectrode recording and various advanced techniques to place the electrode in correct place. The electrodes are connected to a generator implanted in your chest near your collar bone. The lead delivers electrical currents responsible for movement, regulating the abnormal brain cell activity that causes symptoms such as tremor and gait problems and may reduce your Parkinson's disease symptoms.


Q. What symptoms does DBS help?

Over successive programming DBS improves shaking, Stiffness, Slowness, Painful cramping, Involuntary movement. When DBS is ‘on’ its acts like an electronic dopa which helps in reducing the dose of medication and their side effects. DBS can also improve Mood, Energy level, General sense of well-being. However there is no data which shows that it slows down the disease progression.


Q. Am I a good candidate for DBS?

In general, if you have had Parkinson's disease symptoms for at least three years, good response to Parkinson's disease medications, especially Carbidopa/Levodopa, “On/Off” fluctuations, have tried other Parkinson's disease medications, such as Entacapone, Tolcapone, Selegiline, Apomorphine or Amantadine without beneficial results and Parkinson's disease symptoms that interfere with daily activities are the best candidates for DBS surgery

At KIMS Hospitals patients are being evaluated by the Parkinson’s group which has professional training in DBS. The Parkinson’s group includes a Functional Neurosurgeon, Movement disorders specialist, Clinical Neuropsychologist, Physiotherapist, Nurse and other medical team members evaluate and decide whether you are fit for DBS or not.


Q: Will I be able to stop taking my Parkinson's disease medications after I underwent DBS?

Although most patients will need to remain on medications after DBS

surgery, many will be able lower their total daily dose by 30 to 50% and the gap between each medication can be increased.


Q. Are there any risk and complications for DBS?

Like any surgery, Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) carries with it a risk of complications. They include temporary complications and hardware problems. However, the state-of-the-art technology used for precision by the surgeons at KIMS Hospitals, advantages overweight the risks involved.


Dr. MANAS PANIGRAHI

Sr. Consultant Neurosurgeon 

KIMS Hospitals,Secunderabad.

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