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Deep brain stimulation

What is it?

DBS is an invasive procedure requiring brain surgery to place electrodes in a specific region deep within the brain. A power source, also implanted in the body, supplies repeated pulses of current to stimulate that part of the brain.

What is it used for?

DBS is used to treat Parkinson’s disease and movement disorders such as dystonia. Researchers are exploring whether it could also be used to treat psychiatric disorders.

What are the potential risks?

Risks resulting from the neurosurgery itself include infection and bleeding in the brain. There is some evidence linking DBS with unintended changes in mood, understanding and behaviour.

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Donah Shine

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