Highlight text to annotate itX
You've seen how deep brain stimulation did help the sickest of Parkinson's
patients but it also be the first treatment it ever slow the progression
of the disease?
Dale Bevels remembers how his life changed several years ago. His winning
streak on the golf course became a losing streak, and simple
tasks became riddled with simple mistakes. I noticed in the mornings when I would crank my laptop
that my fingers would not respond as i wanted them to
and when I would type out even short words
like the word T-H-E
instead of having one E,
I would have four, five or six E's. I would have to go back and
I began to be aware that something was wrong. His golf buddies urged him to see a doctor.
After an exam, a neurologist gave him the news
"you have Parkinson's, Parkinson's doesn't have you".
For the last two years Dale's been on numerous medications to manage symptoms
I have been doing well and as long as I take it
religiously around the clock,
very few people, I think, notice that I have it.
But he wants more than to just manage his disease. One of the hardest things for
any patient, I believe, is to lose their personal dignity.
If I can stay ahead of the game and maintain that personal dignity,
for just a little bit longer, five years ten years,
that's one of my most important wishes. Dale wants to help change the course of
Parkinson's treatments for himself and others, so he's enrolled in a
Vanderbilt researchers want to know if TBS can slow Parkinson's progression.
Parkinson's disease there are areas of the brain that are slowly degenerating
away and no one knows why.
As areas degenerate other brain areas become overactive possibly leading to
the advancement of this disease.
so this therapy, deep brain simulation, when applied very early durring the course of this disease,
It's our hope that by
reversing and slowing that
unexpected or abnormal overactivity of the brain,
that in fact it may slow the progression of the disease.
In surgery Vanderbilt's sophisticated computer
program has helped guide neurosurgeons to the targets in Dale's brain.
But can Dale feel that test current working to control his tremors?
It's a tiny little electrical impulse
change the way
the brain cells communicate with each other but not enough that you could feel
it with your hand
or not enough that it could injure the brain.
As we begin stimulating the right area of the brain
for the therapy, that stiffness just melted away
and in fact it was quite dramatic. He could feel it, I could feel it
Open wide and close.
Tap both fingers.
I've been awake the whole time.
I'm a little bit groggy, but there's been no pain,
It's kind of like an afternoon nap on the sofa, really.
I'm going to first be testing to see if we get
improvements in symptoms, and I'm going to keep going up from there and I'm going to be looking for any side effects.
Doctor Charles says before the study started
he didn't know if it would be easier or more difficult to program the DBS
systems in early Parkinson's patients because their symptoms aren't as severe as
patients who've had later stage Parkinson's. Cases like Dale's will help
him gather information to answer that and many more questions.
So how will Doctor Charles learn if TBS is slowing Dale's Parkinson's?
All of the people in the study will be followed.
Every six months, they'll come back into the hospital for a week long stay week long stay
where we'll stop their medications and stimulation
and we'll wait for all those effects to completely washout and then we'll be
Parkinson's with a rating scale that's used,
and that will be the basis of the data collection for the study.
As for Dale...
After his first programming...I can tell you that my trembling has diminished a bit
with no meds.
But he understands that it will be
years before researchers now if DBS will slow his Parkinson's progression.
In the meantime, Dale looks forward to a rematch with his buddies on
the golf course. Katy bar the door, I'm after their money again because I feel
like I'm really
and ready to play and get serious again.
another Vanderbilt study is looking at how long the effects of medications and
stimulation linger in the body
once patients stop all treatments. That information will be vital to future
studies targeting ways of slowing the progression of Parkinson's.
Movement disorders also strike children. Can DBS help the youngest
and sickest of patients?