Saturday, December 10, 2022

What is DBS for OCD?

"An important development for treatment-resistant OCD is deep brain stimulation (DBS). DBS has been used since the mid-1980s to treat movement disorders such as severe tremor or Parkinson’s disease. [And more recently, psychiatric conditions such as OCD, Tourette's Syndrome, & Depression]. DBS involves placing electrodes in specific targeted areas of the brain. Once the electrodes are in place they are connected by wires under the skin to pulse generators under the skin (usually just below the collarbone). The pulse generator or “implantable neurostimulator” contains a battery for power and a microchip to regulate the stimulation. The treating physician uses a hand-held wand and small computer to communicate with the pulse generator through the skin. In doing, so the treating physician can determine how much electrical stimulation is delivered in which manner through the stimulating electrodes. These pulse generators are very similar to those implanted under the skin (also usually just below the collarbone) for patients with cardiac pacemakers. The treating physician even uses a similar device to communicate with the pulse generator through the skin. The biggest difference is that in DBS the electrodes are in the brain instead of in the heart (as is the case with cardiac pacemakers)."


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