As many as 60,000 new cases of Parkinson’s disease are diagnosed in the United States each year. The medical team at Texas Brain & Spine Center, with offices in Webster and Lake Jackson, Texas, understands how the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease can impact your life. The team, including experienced neurosurgeon James Gregory Bonnen, MD, offers comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services, including deep brain stimulation, to keep your symptoms well controlled. Find out more about your options for treating Parkinson’s disease by calling the Texas Brain & Spine Center nearest you or by requesting an appointment online.
Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that causes uncontrollable movements, like tremors and shaking. This disorder results when certain nerve cells in your brain begin to degenerate and die.
The loss of these cells results in a decreased production of dopamine, a chemical messenger that supports healthy brain function. Without enough dopamine, your brain function becomes skewed and can trigger symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.
The root cause of brain cell death isn’t clear, but your genetics and environment may play a role.
In the earliest stages of the disorder, you may experience mild symptoms that aren’t noticeable. As Parkinson’s disease progresses, your symptoms may begin affecting one side of the body first before interfering with movements on both sides.
Common signs of Parkinson’s disease include:
Loss of unconscious movements, like blinking or smiling, may occur. You may also have increased difficulty with your body coordination and balance.
In many cases, Dr. Bonnen can diagnose Parkinson’s disease based on your symptoms. He reviews your medical history and performs a physical exam to rule out other medical issues that may be causing your symptoms. You may also need an MRI or a CT scan of your brain to confirm Parkinson’s disease.
Dr. Bonnen creates a treatment plan for your condition, depending on your symptoms and their severity. He focuses on keeping your condition well-controlled and slowing down the progression of your disease.
While there’s no cure for Parkinson’s disease, Dr. Bonnen can help you manage your symptoms and cope with the changes the condition brings to your life.
In addition to medications for reducing tremors, Dr. Bonnen offers innovative treatments with deep brain stimulation. This type of therapy involves a device that delivers impulses of electrical energy into specific areas of your brain. The electrical impulses disrupt the signals in the brain that cause tremors and other Parkinson’s disease symptoms.
Deep brain stimulation requires the surgical implantation of a Medtronic device, which contains a small generator attached to electrodes. Dr. Bonnen makes a small incision in your upper chest where the generator resides and makes small openings in your skull to attach the electrode leads.
To treat your tremors, Dr. Bonnen preprograms the stimulator with settings customized to meet your specific needs.
Learn more about the benefits of deep brain stimulation for treating Parkinson’s disease by calling the Texas Brain & Spine Center nearest you or by scheduling an appointment online today.