Slightly larger than the typical man's watch, the Brio neurostimulator has a thin 10 mm profile and weighs 29 grams (approximately 1 oz). Additionally, the device has the greatest recommended implant depth of any rechargeable DBS device. The thin profile and greater implant depth potentially makes the neurostimulator less noticeable and more comfortable for patients.
"Deep brain stimulation therapy is often the preferred treatment for many Parkinson's disease patients," said Professor Dr. Volker Sturm, chairman of neurosurgery at the University Hospital of Cologne. "For these patients, device size and longevity are important considerations. The small size of the Brio neurostimulator is a real improvement and was a good choice for this patient."
The procedure was performed by Professor Sturm's colleague, Dr. Mohammad Maarouf, at the University Hospital of Cologne.
The Brio DBS system delivers mild electrical pulses to specific targets in the brain, stimulating the structures that are involved in motor control. The system consists of a neurostimulator - a surgically implanted battery-operated device that generates the electrical pulses - and leads which carry the pulses to the brain to influence the irregular nerve signals responsible for the symptoms of Parkinson's disease.
"The Brio neurostimulator is an important addition to our family of deep brain stimulation systems," said Chris Chavez, president of the St. Jude Medical Neuromodulation Division. "We are excited to offer physicians a best-in-class product to help them meet the needs of patients who require a smaller, long-lasting rechargeable system in order to better control the symptoms of this debilitating disease."