In a nutshell
This study investigated the effects of deep brain stimulation (DBS) in 2 places in the brain in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD)-associated pain. Researchers suggested that DBS improves the pain in these patients.
PD is a chronic disease that affects the brain cells. These cells lose their abilities to control body functions. This leaves patients with physical and mental symptoms such as tremors or depression. Between 30 to 83% of these patients have disease-associated pain that affects their quality of life.
DBS is a type of surgery. It delivers electrical impulses in regions of the brain to reduce or stop PD symptoms. Prior studies suggested that DBS improves symptoms such as pain, sleep disorders and so on. However, it remains poorly studied with only a small number of cases.
Methods & findings
This study included information about 64 patients who underwent DBS in different regions of the brain. 28 patients received DBS in the Globus pallidus internus (group 1) and 36 in the subthalamic nucleus (group 2). Pain was measured before and 4 months after DBS.
Pain improved in all 64 patients after DBS. Patients from group 1 had a 75% improvement, while patients from group 2 had a 79% improvement.
The bottom line
This study concluded that Globus pallidus internus or subthalamic nucleus DBS equally improves pain in patients with Parkinson's disease.
The fine print
This study included a short follow-up period. Further studies with longer follow-up are needed.
Published By :
Nov 13, 2019
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