Deep brain stimulation (DBS), a surgical procedure to help relieve symptoms of movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and dystonia, has improved the quality of life for some patients, easing motor symptoms and decreasing medication needs. Electrodes are implanted in a targeted area of the brain to deliver high-frequency electrical stimulation that helps regulate abnormal impulses as well as certain cells and chemicals. The amount of stimulation delivered is controlled by an impulse generator battery (IPG) that is implanted subcutaneously in the patient’s upper chest and connected to the electrodes in the brain. Until recently, patients had to come into a neurology clinic multiple times for adjustment of the device’s programming, especially in the first few months after surgical implantation. In 2021, AdventHealth became the first in Central Florida to offer the NeuroSphere Virtual Clinic, allowing DBS patients to receive their programming adjustments remotely via a telehealth appointment.
Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in March 2021, the NeuroSphere Virtual Clinic provides patients the ability to connect to their physician through a secure patient controller app that includes video chat and integrated remote programming features. The physician can talk with the patient, observe symptoms and prescribe new treatment settings remotely to the patient's neurostimulation device using their clinician programmer app.
“With the NeuroSphere Virtual Clinic, we can provide the same, effective care to our patients in a secure way that is much more convenient for them,” explains Mitesh Lotia, MD, Movement Disorder Neurologist and Medical Director of the Movement Disorder Program at AdventHealth Neuroscience Institute. “Because DBS surgery is only available at larger medical centers, many patients travel several hours to receive treatment. Unfortunately, this can create a burden to accessing the ongoing follow-up care needed to properly regulate their device. Now we have eliminated this obstacle. Patients can receive their programming from the comfort of their home or office.”
AdventHealth offers DBS as a treatment option as appropriate for patients with the following conditions:
Telehealth visits through the NeuroSphere Virtual Clinic are currently covered by Medicare and private insurances.
To learn more or refer a patient, click here.
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