Deep Brain Stimulation and Applications

History of Deep Brain Stimulation

History: Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) started as an evolution of severely invasive ablative and lesioning surgical procedures where parts of the brain were made dysfunctional by using heat probes. The patients suffering from Parkinsonís disease were treated by thermal destruction of tremor originating regions of the brain. The use of high intensity electrical impulses instead of heat probes was an alternative approach used for making the brain tissue dysfunctional. Neurologists and neurosurgeons have been using electrical stimulation since 1960's to even locate different sites in the brain. During the process of electrical stimulation for disease detection and study, they discovered the affects of those electrical impulses on neurological disorders. They found that several symptoms of neurological disorders could be suppressed by stimulating certain parts of the brain selectively. Discovery of those positive disease suppressing affects electrical impulses led to the discovery of Deep Brain Stimulation. Deep Brain Stimulation officially was first developed in France in 1987, when professors Alim-Louis Benabid and Pierre Pollak of the University of Grenoble published results of the first application of chronic deep brain stimulation for the treatment of movement disorders.