Focused Ultrasound - revolutionary new treatment for Essential Tremor and tremor caused by Parkinson's disease
Rambam Academic hospital one of the most experienced medical centers in the world in treatment with this innovative procedure.
Tremor is a neurological problem that occurs with many illnesses such as Parkinson's Disease and Essential Tremor. When the tremor is of moderate to high severity, it affects eating, drinking, writing, and other activities that require controlled and accurate movement. The result is a significant decrease in quality of life.
Many patients with a significant tremor that does not respond to medication are offered a surgery to implant a pulse generator and electrodes in the brain, referred to as Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS).
As an alternative to this invasive treatment, the Israeli company Insightec invented a revolutionary non-invasive treatment that produces significant and immediate relief of the tremor in a single treatment.
The procedure, performed on the Exablate system in the MRI room by means of a focused ultrasound (FUS), is performed while the patient is awake and involves no anesthesia, no incisions in the scalp, and no burr holes through the skull or insertion of electrodes into the brain.
The innovative procedure is approved for commercial use in Europe and is offered in Israel at the Rambam Medical Center campus.
Who Can Benefit from Treatment with MRI-guided FUS?
The treatment is suitable for people suffering from hand tremors that are not well controlled by medication, specifically those suffering from Parkinson's Disease or Essential Tremor.
What are the Advantages of MRI-targeted FUS for treatment for Tremors?
- No need for cranial incisions or implants
- Immediate and ongoing relief of the tremor
- Usually only one treatment is required
- Reduced dependence on medication can improve quality of life
- No harmful radiation
Watch patient testimonials:* FUS treatment- Dutch patient: turn on YouTube Subtitles in order to view subtitles in English (Click the CC on the bottom left part of the video)
The story of a patient who underwent tremor treatment
A 73-year-old patient entered the MRT offices of Rambam Medical Center. He was a successful businessman who had suffered for the past 15 years from Essential Tremor, which negatively affected his physical functions and quality of life.
The patient experienced a strong tremor on the right side of his body. He was unable to drink from a glass without spilling its contents. The tremor complicated his work. His handwriting became unintelligible because of the trembling of his hands. The day before his procedure took place, the patient was asked to write a short sentence on a sheet of paper. No matter how hard he tried, his transcription sprawled over the entire paper and was impossible to read.
Two hours after the procedure began, doctors handed the patient a glass of water. For the first time in many years, the patient managed to raise the glass to his lips and drink with pleasure, without spilling a single drop. “I was reborn,” he told his doctors.
The patient then asked for a sheet of paper and a pencil. In small and neat script, he wrote down a quote from a famous Israeli politician: “If you truly want it – it is not a fairy tale.”
“I feel happy,” the patient confessed later on. “I was constantly told that if your hands are always shaking, you should hire a secretary to keep your records and prepare coffee for you. Yet my dream was to be completely independent of anyone. And today, that dream has come true!”
Presentation by Prof Menashe Zaaroor about Rambam's experience with the FUS method.
REMOTE CONSULTATION - CHECK IF YOU ARE SUITABLE FOR THE TREATMENT
Dr. Schlesinger will examine your case and will determine if the treatment can help your condition.
- Zoom consultation - $750
What is the FUS procedure?
The FUS procedure is a non-invasive treatment option for patients with essential tremor. It uses high-frequency sound waves to heat and destroy a small area of the thalamus, which is the part of the brain responsible for controlling involuntary movements like tremors.
During the procedure, the patient will lie down on a table, and a helmet-like device will be placed over their head. This device contains over a thousand ultrasound transducers that will focus sound waves on a precise area of the brain. The patient will be awake during the procedure and may be asked to perform certain movements to help guide the treatment.
The sound waves create heat that destroys the targeted brain tissue, which can reduce or eliminate tremors. The procedure usually takes 3-4 hours to complete, and patients can go home the same day. Some patients may experience mild side effects such as headache, nausea, or numbness, but these usually resolve within a few hours.
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