New method of deep brain stimulation therapy with two electrodes implanted in parallel and side by side

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✓ Reversibility and adaptability are preferred features of long-term therapeutic deep brain stimulation (DBS). In such therapy, a permanent stimulating electrode with four contact points is placed at the stimulation site and, generally speaking, bipolar stimulation is induced by various pairs of adjacent contact points on one electrode. The stimulation sites are thus all located along the trajectory of the implanted electrode. In a patient with unilateral severe essential tremor, the authors implanted two electrodes side by side and parallel to each other in the unilateral thalamic ventralis intermedius nucleus. Using these electrodes, the authors were able to deliver current flow not only along the electrode trajectory, but also between the two electrodes in a direction parallel to the anterior commissure—posterior commissure line. Although individual stimulations, delivered by each of the two electrodes using all parameters and all stimulation points, were unable to stop the patient's tremor completely without adverse effects, the new stimulation method, in which electrical currents passed between the two electrodes, effected complete abolition of the tremor without adverse effects. With the aid of this method, one can use two electrodes, implanted in parallel and side by side, to achieve maximum efficacy and to reduce adverse effects in some instances of DBS therapy.

Article Information

Contributor Notes

Address reprint requests to: Takamitsu Yamamoto, M.D., Ph.D., Department of Neurological Surgery, Nihon University School of Medicine, 30 Ohyaguchi Kamimachi, Itabashi-ku, Tokyo 173–8 610, Japan. email: nusmyama@med.nihon-u.ac.jp.

© AANS, except where prohibited by US copyright law.

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