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Oliver Flouty, Kazuaki Yamamoto, Jurgen Germann, Irene E. Harmsen, Hyun Ho Jung, Cletus Cheyuo, Ajmal Zemmar, Vanessa Milano, Can Sarica, and Andres M. Lozano

OBJECTIVE

Pain is the most common nonmotor symptom of Parkinson’s disease (PD) and is often undertreated. Deep brain stimulation (DBS) effectively mitigates the motor symptoms of this multisystem neurodegenerative disease; however, its therapeutic effect on nonmotor symptoms, especially pain, remains inconclusive. While there is a critical need to help this large PD patient population, guidelines for managing this significant disease burden are absent. Herein, the authors systematically reviewed the literature and conducted a meta-analysis to study the influence of traditional (subthalamic nucleus [STN] and globus pallidus internus [GPi]) DBS on chronic pain in patients with PD.

METHODS

The authors performed a systematic review of the literature and a meta-analysis following PRISMA guidelines. Risk of bias was assessed using the levels of evidence established by the Oxford Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine. Inclusion criteria were articles written in English, published in a peer-reviewed scholarly journal, and about studies conducting an intervention for PD-related pain in no fewer than 5 subjects.

RESULTS

Twenty-six studies were identified and included in this meta-analysis. Significant interstudy heterogeneity was detected (Cochran’s Q test p < 0.05), supporting the use of the random-effects model. The random-effects model estimated the effect size of DBS for the treatment of idiopathic pain as 1.31 (95% CI 0.84–1.79). The DBS-on intervention improved pain scores by 40% as compared to the control state (preoperative baseline or DBS off).

CONCLUSIONS

The results indicated that traditional STN and GPi DBS can have a favorable impact on pain control and improve pain scores by 40% from baseline in PD patients experiencing chronic pain. Further trials are needed to identify the subtype of PD patients whose pain benefits from DBS and to identify the mechanisms by which DBS improves pain in PD patients.

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Can Sarica, Christian Iorio-Morin, David H. Aguirre-Padilla, Michelle Paff, Samuelle-Arianne Villeneuve, Artur Vetkas, Kazuaki Yamamoto, Nardin Samuel, Vanessa Milano, Aaron Loh, Brendan Santyr, Ajmal Zemmar, Andres M. Lozano, and Mojgan Hodaie

OBJECTIVE

Peripheral nerve field stimulation (PNFS) is a tool in the armamentarium of treatment options for trigeminal pain. The efficacy of this modality in mitigating trigeminal pain remains unclear. The aim of this study was to examine the existing literature on PNFS and elucidate pain score outcomes associated with its use in patients with trigeminal pain.

METHODS

A systematic review and meta-analysis was performed in accordance with the PRISMA framework. The PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus databases were queried on June 10, 2020. Studies reporting pain outcomes in more than 5 adult patients treated with PNFS for facial pain were included. The primary outcome of the study was the mean difference in the visual analog scale (VAS) score from the last follow-up to baseline, and it was analyzed by an inverse-variance, random-effect model. The risk of bias was assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale and a funnel plot.

RESULTS

Of the 4597 studies screened for inclusion, 46 relevant full-text articles were assessed for eligibility. Eleven observational cohort studies from the 46 articles were found to be eligible, and reported on a total of 109 patients. In 86% (94/109) of cases, trial stimulation was successful and followed by a permanent system implantation. VAS scores improved by 75% (mean difference 6.32/10 points, 95% CI 5.38–7.27 points) compared to baseline. Seventy-six percent (42/55) of patients became medication free or required lower doses of medications. The complication rate necessitating surgical revision was estimated at 32% per procedure.

CONCLUSIONS

These findings support the belief that PNFS provides effective, long-term pain control for trigeminal pain. Statistical heterogeneity was considerable across all studies. Future work should be aimed at conducting double-blind randomized controlled trials to determine the utility of PNFS for treating various forms of trigeminal pain for which limited therapeutic options exist.

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Can Sarica, Anton Fomenko, Christian Iorio-Morin, Ajmal Zemmar, Kazuaki Yamamoto, Artur Vetkas, Andres M. Lozano, and Alfonso Fasano