Objectives: Ventralis intermedius deep brain stimulation is an established intervention for medication-refractory essential tremor. Newer constant current stimulation technology offers theoretical advantage over the traditional constant voltage systems in terms of delivering a more biologically stable therapy. There are no previous reports on the outcomes of constant current deep brain stimulation in the treatment of essential tremor. This study aimed to evaluate the long-term efficacy of ventralis intermedius constant current deep brain stimulation in patients diagnosed with essential tremor. Materials and Methods: Essential tremor patients implanted with constant current deep brain stimulation for a minimum of three years were evaluated. Clinical outcomes were assessed using the Fahn–Tolosa–Marin tremor rating scale at baseline and postoperatively at the time of evaluation. The quality of life in the patients was assessed using the Quality of Life in Essential Tremor questionnaire. Results: Ten patients were evaluated with a median age at evaluation of 74 years (range 66–79) and a mean follow up time of 49.7 (range 36–78) months since starting stimulation. Constant current ventralis intermedius deep brain stimulation was well tolerated and effective in all patients with a mean score improvement from 50.7 ± 5.9 to 17.4 ± 5.7 (p = 0.0020) in the total Fahn–Tolosa–Marin rating scale score (65.6%). Furthermore, the total combined mean Quality of Life in Essential Tremor score was improved from 56.2 ± 4.9 to 16.8 ± 3.5 (p value = 0.0059) (70.1%). Conclusion: This report shows that long-term constant current ventralis intermedius deep brain stimulation is a safe and effective intervention for essential tremor patients.
- Constant current stimulation
- essential tremor
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine