High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) Treatments for Movement Disorders

High-intensity focused ultrasound or HIFU, in short, is an early-stage therapeutic treatment for improving the quality of life of Parkinson’s disease and essential tremors patients in a non-invasive approach. HIFU is novel and latest technique which precisely and accurately focuses beams of ultrasonic energy upon targets deep inside brain without damaging the normal tissue surrounding the operation site. Focused ultrasound in this way produces therapeutic effects which enable treatment of Parkinson’s and essential tremors without surgery. In the long term, HIFU has the potential for treating underlying pathology of the disease while preventing progression and restoring function.

Essential Tremors – This is the most common type of movement disorder which is even more prevalent than Parkinson’s disease. However, several cases of essential tremors are mild in nature, but others can be quite debilitating over time. Essential tremors are most severe in hands and can often interfere with normal everyday activities like writing, drinking or eating. Quite often essential tremors are found to affect the neck and head region, alongside causing shaking.
Parkinson’s disease – This is a progressive disorder of the nervous system affecting movement. Starting with a barely noticeable tremor in hand, it gradually develops to cause stiffness and/or slowing of movement as well. Parkinson’s disease patient’s symptoms include little or no expression in face, speech may become soft or slurred and arms may not swing while walking. Moreover, these symptoms may worsen over time with the progression of Parkinson’s disease. Neurosurgeons in occasional cases suggest surgery so as to regulate certain areas of the brain for improving symptoms.

HIFU Offers Relief of Motor Symptoms

High-intensity focused ultrasound has the potential to provide symptomatic relief for a variety of motor symptoms by making thermal lesions deep in brain in order to interrupt circuits which are involved in causing tremors and dyskinesia. Symptoms and targets which are being assessed for treatments using HIFU include thalamus (thalamotomy), globus pallidus (pallidotomy), sub thalamus nucleus and the pallid thalamic tract. However, presently HIFU treatment is only being assessed for treating one side of the brain in order to unilaterally affect Parkinson’s dyskinesia or essential tremor.

Basic Advantages of HIFU Treatments

HIFU is a non-invasive procedure and which means that it does not involve any incisions, holes or placement of electrodes in the skull for operation while reducing the risk of blood clots and infection as well. Along with this HIFU precisely targets the treatment area and minimizes damage to the healthy brain tissue located nearby. When compared to deep brain stimulation, HIFU is a single treatment procedure which does not additionally require subsequent procedures like for replacement of device batteries, adjusting simulator settings or for repairing broken wires. Moreover, the risk of infections associated with implants and collateral damage to healthy tissue is also avoided in patients undergoing HIFU treatment for movement disorders.

Advanced Neurosurgery Treatments in India

Neurosurgery treatments in India are highly advanced and equivalent to the best which is currently available in the world. Neurosurgeons performing neurosurgery treatments in India are globally recognized to be some of the best doctors and adept in performing the most complicated procedures to a wide-spectrum of neurological conditions. Moreover, neuro surgery cost in India is another alluring factor which draws a growing number of international patients seeking good quality of affordable healthcare solutions in foreign countries.

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