DBS is a surgical treatment designed to reduce the severity of the tremor in your arms and hands associated with essential tremor (ET).1
DBS uses a surgically implanted medical device similar to a cardiac pacemaker to deliver electrical stimulation to the parts of the brain that control movement. Stimulation of these areas blocks the signals that cause the disabling motor symptoms of essential tremor. As a result, many individuals may achieve greater control over their body movements.
The DBS system for essential tremor control consists of three implanted components:
The device settings and stimulation levels can be adjusted noninvasively by a clinician using a programming device.
Although there is no cure for essential tremor, DBS has been shown to reduce symptoms.1
Risks of DBS can include risks of surgery, side effects, or device complications.
Neurologists and neurosurgeons have used electrical stimulation since the 1960s as a way to locate and distinguish specific sites in the brain. Brain stimulation technology was created in the 1980s.
There is no cure for essential tremor at this time. DBS therapy can treat some of the symptoms of essential tremor and improve function, but does not cure the underlying condition. If the treatment is discontinued, your symptoms will return.
Individuals with essential tremor experience total or significant suppression of disabling tremor – significantly reducing disability. DBS may improve the activities of daily living for people with essential tremor.1
Information on this site should not be used as a substitute for talking with your doctor. Always talk with your doctor about diagnosis and treatment information.