Posted 3/24/2010 11:16 PM (GMT -6)
I have several friends that have had DBS surgery. 2 were PD sufferers and the other one was a dystonia patient. All 3 had maximized their medication use and were at the end of the line regarding treatment. Of the 2 of them, two had very successful DBS treatment. the 3ed experienced a minor bleed while on the table. A minor bleed in DBS surgery equals a minor stoke. She was impaired for almost 12 months. In talking with with all 3 of them, them would sy the key to succesful results is interviewing several neurologists and neurosurgeons. Select one that had alot of experience. Also, it is important that they have the latest DBS equipment in the surgical suite. All would say that it is worth traveling to get a good second and third opinions. The success of the surgery depends on the accuracy in which the leads are implanted into the brain. Once you have "GOOD" lead plaacement, the surgical team can then program the leads for maximum efficacy. If the leads are poorly placed, you will never experience adequate results. My one friend with PD ended up having a minor bleed during surgery. A minor bleed equal a stroke. The stroke impacted the way she talked, communicated and processed information. She was lucky, after a year of therapy she finally was able to function independantly. DBS surgery is remarkable, If everything goes well it is a miracle. Unfortunately, there are times when problem occur.
The surgery itself is very long. The first screw your head into a metal frame similar to a halo. The frame limits the movement of your head. You have an MRI. Then you go into surgery. ou will remain awake during the entier process because if the important that you answer questions for the surgeon. The surgery is very slow and can last up to 8 hoursl You must remain awake and screwed into the metal frame throughout the process. Of course you head will be shaved. When the surgery is finished, you will end up with to metal bumps the protrude through your skull. You hair will cover them up.
That is what I know about DBS.