In Alzheimer’s Patients, Deep Brain Stimulation Appears to Be Effective and Safe Treatment

In Alzheimer’s Patients, Deep Brain Stimulation Appears to Be Effective and Safe Treatment
Results from the ADvance trial, a Phase 2 study investigating the safety of deep brain stimulation (DBS) for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), lead researchers to believe the treatment is safe and well-tolerated in patients. DBS targets a specific brain structure involved in memory pathways. The research paper, “Bilateral deep brain stimulation of the fornix for Alzheimer's disease: surgical safety in the ADvance trial,” was published in the Journal of Neurosurgery. Deep brain stimulation is a neurosurgical procedure where the DBS device is implanted in a specific area of the brain, and the neurostimulator delivers small electrical impulses that interfere and regulate abnormal symptoms. Currently, this procedure is approved in the U.S. only for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease and its debilitating symptoms, such as tremors, walking problems, and rigidity that cannot be properly controlled with medications. Researchers are now investigating the use of DBS for other neurological conditions, such as epilepsy, depression, and bipolar disorder. The Barrow Center for Neuromodulation in Phoenix, Arizona, is leading the investigation of the DBS application for the treatment of Alzheimer’s. Earlier research has indicated that DBS has the potential to slow cognitive decline and even induce positive metabolic changes in the brain. Researchers led by Barrow Center Director Francisco Ponce, M.D., report the results of a small study evaluating the safety, efficac
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