Type of Surgery
Last updated: 02/17/2009
Parkinson's disease affects approximately one million Americans. The peak incidence is approximately at age 62, but young-onset PD can occur as early as age 40. Because young-onset patients live with their disease for so many more years, they are more...
likely to become candidates for surgery than older-onset patients. In addition, younger patients tend to do better with surgery and suffer fewer adverse effects from the surgery. Approximately 5% of older PD patients receive one form or another of PD surgery; many more develop the symptoms for which surgery may be effective, but either develop them at an advanced age, making surgery inadvisable, or decide the risks of surgery are not worth the potential benefit, or do not choose surgery for some other reason.
Pallidotomy is a procedure where a tiny electrical probe is placed in the globus pallidus (one of the basal ganglia of the brain), which is then heated to 80 degrees celsius for 60 s, to destroy a small area of brain cells. Pallidotomy is used to treat dyskinesias in patients with Parkinson's disease.
More than 60 percent of procedures neurosurgeons perform are spine-related, according to the National Neurosurgical Procedural Statistics 2006 Survey from the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS).
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