Ultrasound for tremor
All over Research is being carried out around the world into new therapies for Parkinson's disease and more and more often they have found their way into everyday clinical practice.
At Kiel University Hospital, for example, the first successes are being achieved with ultrasound treatment against tremors (tremors).
So far there has only been the option of drug therapy or so-called deep brain stimulation, in which one penetrates into the brain with a probe.
Instead, ultrasonic waves are now used
A new method for Germany at the University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein (UKSH) does not require drilling into the skull in order to defeat the so-called essential tremor.
Instead, the patient is given a helmet. This bundles the ultrasonic waves and directs them to a specific point in the brain. “The bundling of the ultrasonic waves causes the tissue to heat up. This places a small scar deep in the brain, ”explains Ann-Kristin Helmers, senior physician in neurosurgery. This scar ensures that a node, which is essential to the tremor, is broken.
Steffen Paschen, senior physician in neurology, explains it like this: “Trembling is caused by a vibrating network. This is a network disease where there are tremors in different places. You have to break this network. And the point that we set is a node in this trembling network. ”The result: The trembling becomes less.
This method is also used in Bonn.
According to the doctors, the tremor can initially only be treated on one side of the body. The other side of the body can also be treated a few months apart, so that the tremors can then be stopped on both sides of the body. Technically, the UKSH in Kiel is, according to its own statements, at the forefront in Germany. In Germany the method is only still used in Bonn.
17 patients in treatment so far
The doctors are very satisfied with the new method. Because they don't have to insert a tube into the brain, they say there is no risk of cerebral hemorrhage. Most tremor patients are now opting for this new method, according to the UKSH. Within a year, the doctors at the UKSH were able to treat 17 patients with the ultrasound waves. As a rule, you can leave the clinic after a few days.
According to the UKSH, the purchase of the treatment device cost around two million euros, largely financed by the Damp Foundation. Most of the costs of the treatment are covered by the health insurances, the rest by the UKSH.
A remedy for Parkinson's?
According to the UKSH, the procedure has been in use in the USA for several years - for various types of tremor, including those associated with Parkinson's disease. For the future, the doctors hope that the ultrasonic waves may also be used in other specialist areas.
Source: UKSH Kiel
Important addendum from Jürgen Zender!
Comment from Ali Sen in a Parkinson's Facebook group:
“This year I presented myself in Kiel for therapy. You have to know that the procedure is not a cash benefit. I applied for reimbursement twice and both were rejected. Of course, I turned down the refusals. The KK last wrote to me that a commission should evaluate my request. I should ask the KK about the state of affairs. "
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