Brain-stimulating headwear may alleviate Parkinson’s symptoms

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Author: Geoffrey ChangPublished: 23 June 2015

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A new non-invasive, three-pronged helmet could act as an alternative for deep brain stimulation surgery (DBS).

The brain-stimulating device helps to mitigate symptoms in Parkinson’s patients by using external electrodes to send a low-level current to the motor cortex of the brain.

Unlike DBS, where electrical leads are inserted into the skull, the new device is worn on top of the head like a helmet without the need for surgery. Its developers claim it would be a cheaper, less invasive alternative to DBS, although further development is needed before it can receive FDA approval.

Still in its testing phase, the so-called STIMband headwear prototype called was designed by a team of graduate students at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, US.

It is hoped that STIMband will become a user-friendly device that patients can use at home and administer themselves.

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