“Our findings hold promise for helping people with severe Tourette syndrome, who are in need of new treatment options to improve their quality of life,” said study author Andrea Cavanna, MD, of the University of Birmingham, in the United Kingdom.
It is estimated that two million Americans are affected by Tourette syndrome, which is a neurological disorder characterized by uncontrolled movements and vocalizations, or tics, lasting more than a year. The first symptoms of Tourette syndrome are almost always noticed in childhood and some common tics include eye blinking, facial grimacing, shoulder shrugging and head or shoulder jerking. People who have Tourette syndrome often also have obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), depression, anxiety or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
The study involved 15 people with severe Tourette syndrome and OCD who were an average age of 30 and continued to have severe symptoms after trying medications and psychobehavioral treatments. They also had high levels of depression and anxiety at the start of the study. The participants were followed and tested for two years after deep brain stimulation, which involves a surgically implanted brain pacemaker that sends electrical impulses to certain parts of the brain.
The study found that the participants experienced 52 percent fewer tics on average and a 26 to 33 percent improvement in the symptoms of OCD, depression and anxiety two years after deep brain stimulation began. Deep brain stimulation had no significant effect on thinking abilities in the study.
“Despite having only 15 patients in this study, it is the largest to date on the effectiveness of deep brain stimulation as a treatment for Tourette syndrome,” said Cavanna. “The results showed that all 15 people who were assessed after two years’ treatment experienced improvements in disabling tics and neurological problems, which is encouraging. Unfortunately three patients from the original group of 18 were no longer part of the study at follow up and this limits the ability to generalize our findings. More research needs to be done to confirm that deep brain stimulation is a safe and effective treatment for Tourette syndrome.”
Deep brain stimulation is FDA approved for the treatment of essential tremor, Parkinson’s disease and dystonia.
The study was supported by the Italian Tourette Syndrome Association, the National Hospital Research and Development Fund and Tourettes Action-UK.
The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 21,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to promoting the highest quality patient-centered neurologic care through education and research. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as epilepsy, dystonia, migraine, Huntington’s disease, and dementia.
For more information about the American Academy of Neurology, visit http://www.aan.com or http://www.thebrainmatters.org.
Rachel L. Seroka | American Academy of Neurology
Inflammation Triggers Unsustainable Immune Response to Chronic Viral Infection
24.10.2016 | Universität Basel
Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia
21.10.2016 | Universitätsklinikum Magdeburg
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.
"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...
COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.
In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...
'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.
Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
24.10.2016 | Health and Medicine
24.10.2016 | Life Sciences
24.10.2016 | Life Sciences