Abu Dhabi: Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, part of the M42 network, has successfully completed 50 deep brain stimulation implants since it was introduced in the hospital in 2020. It is one of the leading hospitals in the UAE to provide this unique treatment option to Parkinson’s disease patients.
What is deep brain stimulation?
Deep brain stimulation is a surgical procedure that involves implanting electrodes in specific areas of the brain, which deliver controlled electrical impulses to modify abnormal brain activity responsible for Parkinson’s disease symptoms.
Electrodes are connected to a device, known as an implantable pulse generator (IPG), which is placed beneath the skin on the chest. Once activated, the IPG emits continuous electrical pulses to the targeted areas of the brain, effectively modulating abnormal neural activity and reducing the debilitating symptoms associated with Parkinson’s disease.
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive condition, and regular follow-up appointments are essential to maintain optimal symptom control.
‘Beacon of hope’
Dr Florian Roser, Chair of the Neurological Institute at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, said: “In the realm of Parkinson’s disease treatment, the advent of deep brain stimulation stands as a revolutionary beacon of hope. This groundbreaking procedure not only alleviates symptoms but fundamentally transforms the lives of patients, offering newfound possibilities and restoring a sense of control in the face of this daunting neurological challenge. As a provider of deep brain stimulation in the UAE, we take pride in offering cutting-edge treatments, reaffirming our dedication to elevating the standard of care for Parkinson’s patients.”
Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi said its offering of deep brain stimulation surgery in the UAE has “significantly reduced” the need for patients to travel abroad for specialised treatment. In fact, patients travelling from the region and beyond seek treatment at the hospital due to the availability of this technology.
The journey toward this achievement began three years ago when Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi collaborated with Cleveland Clinic in the US to introduce deep brain stimulation surgery for patients in the UAE. With a multidisciplinary approach, the surgeries are led by Dr Shivam Om Mittal, Staff Physicianin the Neurological Institute, who leads the Parkinson’s and Movement Disorders Programme, and Dr Tanmoy K. Maiti, Associate Staff Physician, also an expert functional neurosurgeon at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi, who completed fellowship training at Cleveland Clinic in the US along with a team of nurses, physical therapists, speech therapists, and more.
Who is the procedure for?
On qualifying patients for deep brain stimulation surgeries, Dr Mittal said: “The procedure is for people whose Parkinson’s symptoms are really affecting their daily life, despite being prescribed the best medication. These symptoms might include shaking, stiffness, or trouble moving that makes it difficult to do regular activities, despite taking medication as prescribed.”
He added: “Also, to have deep brain stimulation, it’s important to be physically strong enough for surgery and to be prepared for the care needed afterwards. For those who can’t have deep brain stimulation, other treatment options are available such as pump therapy, which is also routinely done at Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi.”
Dr Maiti said: “Every surgery performed has proceeded seamlessly, devoid of complications. We’re thrilled to share that our patients are not just content but experiencing life-changing transformations. In fact, one of our patients once told me he wished he had done this earlier because it has changed the quality of his life.”