Parkinson's implant "enhances the ability to walk" as advanced treatment restores motion to patients who had previously stayed in the house.
- Housebound suffers from Parkinson's disease, which may run free after treatment
- An implant
- The newly developed implant amplifies the signals that are sent from the brain to the limbs, and vice versa
An innovative treatment that can significantly improve the movement of Parkinson's sufferers has been described as "beyond the wildest dreams" of its researchers.
] Patients who had previously stayed in the house now walk free after electrically stimulating their spines.
An implant was designed to amplify the signals sent from the brain to the limbs and vice versa. This allows the patient to walk normally, as is claimed.
A quarter of Parkinson's patients have difficulty walking as the disease takes their toll. Some start to freeze on the spot and even fall over.
Patients were able to receive treatment regain some of their independence so that they could go again
. However, the Canadian pioneering researchers behind the technique said that improving the quality of life for the patients is an immeasurable improvement.
Professor Mandar Jog of Western University in London, Ontario, said the results were "beyond his wildest dreams." In a conversation with the BBC, he said, "Most of our patients have been suffering from the disease for 15 years and have not been confident for several years."
He added, "So they do not stay home with The Danger Falling, traveling to the mall and vacationing is notable to me. "
Gail Jardine, 66, said her quality of life has improved since the implant was implanted two months ago. Mrs. Jardine froze earlier on the spot and fell two or three times a day. The consequent loss of confidence prevented her from undertaking country walks with her husband Stan in Kitchener, Ontario.
Now, for the first time in more than two years, she can go free. She said, "I can walk a lot better. I have not fallen since the beginning of treatment.
Parkinson's disease: 3D representation of neurons containing Lewy bodies, small red spheres that are deposits of proteins that accumulate in brain cells cause their progressive degeneration
"It gives me more confidence and I look forward to taking more walks with Stan and maybe even walking alone." When walking, the brain and legs have to send signals in a loop. First, the brain prompts the legs to move. It then receives signals when a step has been taken and in turn sends instructions for the next step.
And Professor Jog now believes that Parkinson's disease restricts signals that return to the brain – as opposed to that coming from the brain – causing the loop to break and patients to freeze.
He believes that the power outbreak of the implant re-awakens the feedback mechanism from the legs to the brain – which is reduced by the disease. He said, "This is a completely different rehabilitation therapy. We had thought that the movement problems occurred in Parkinson's patients, because the signals from the brain to the legs did not come through.
"But it seems that the signals that return to the brain are broken down."
Dr. Beckie Port of Parkinson's UK UK said, "If future studies show the same promise, this has the potential to dramatically improve the quality of life by giving Parkinson's patients the freedom to enjoy their day-to-day activities."