New Invention Improves Parkinson’s Symptoms

UCF Professor Emeritus Richard Gilson, Ph.D., along with a team of neurological experts, created a new tool to battle the effects of Parkinson’s disease.Gilson

Gilson received a patent for the invention that will help patients struggling with conditions including Tourette’s syndrome, Epilepsy, Essential Tremor, and mood disorders last year though UCF.

Parkinson’s is an incurable disorder that destroys nerve cells in the brain, according to the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation. The symptoms include rigid muscles, tremors and difficulty walking and speaking.

Gilson was diagnosed with the disease in 2003. He relied on a brain-stimulation device that featured a battery the size of a pack of cards that bulged from under his skin to keep the symptoms repressed. Deep-brain stimulation has been an FDA-approved method of treatment for more than a decade. However, in order to keep the device working, Gilson had to undergo potentially life-threatening surgery every two or three years to replace the battery.

Gilson wanted to improve the technology without having to face dangerous procedures.

The invention consists of a quarter-sized apparatus, which would be implanted in the skull. It includes a nickel-sized rechargeable battery that lasts about nine years, and would eliminate the lump created by the current battery. Gilson has also been working on a version that does not require surgery.

The product has yet to be manufactured, but Gilson and his team of doctors hope their invention will better relieve the ailments of neurological conditions.

Watch Gilson explain how his device works in a video from the Orlando Sentinel, at:

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