Recovery after DBS

My mother who is 74 years ago had her DBS 10 days ago, bot sides. She was conscious during surgey but a sedative was given. Post surgery she was unconscious and did not open her eyes for 3 days. Her doctor has started the stimulation but she cant walk and voice is slurred.  .

Has anyone had the same experience?   How long is the initial toning done for


10 Replies

  • I have no experience with DBS however i hope your mother's lack of walking and voice slurring improves with time and is only temporary.

    What has the neurologist told you/your mum ?

    All the best for a good outcome. Thinking of you.

  • I have not heard of anyone being unconscious for three days.  I would want to hear how her doctors explain this.  Did anything unusual happen during the surgery?  I have heard that some people have problems speaking.  Could the difficulty with walking be a result of whatever caused the long period of being unconscious ?  Perhaps this will resolve with time, but her doctors should be explaining this to you.  Best wishes with all of this.

  • Thanks. The anesthesiologist gave her a sedative towards the end of the procedure and they could have caused the unconsciouness. Shes prob sensitive to the drug. They gave a small and usual dose. Shes getting better but not as how she was prior to surgery. 

  • I went 6 weeks after surgery before it was turned on.  I was capable of doing everything that I did before during that period.  The tuning process takes up to a year. Would press the Doctor for clarification of what happened and what to expect.

  • I think the unconsciousness is unusual.  Never heard of that.  I'd want to know why.  It's common practice not to turn on the stimulators for several weeks to a month to allow the brain to heal.  The initial programming can take a long time//trial and error.  I went once each month for the first three months, then every other month thereafter for the first year. I now go every three months for tweaking.  It takes time for healing.  I never had a balance problem before DBS, although I started that after DBS. Stay Strong and my best to you both.  You'll have a good outcome. 

  • Jash, my husband is being considered for DBS but is very worried about the risks. He presently doesn't have a balance problem. Do you think the DBS was worth it? I.e. do you think the gains outweigh the loss (of balance)? Thanks.

  • I was also wondering about this, at present my balance is still good (mostly) but my speech is poor.. I don't want to end up with worse balance with further speech and swallowing problems.

    I have a suitability assessment for DBS in May

    Very best wishes

  • .. Oh and just to add.. I have no external visible tremor or much in the way of dyskinesia but I do experience internal tremor and axial rigidity, my main symptom, which is helped by my Madopar regime, plus Neuropatch and artane (Trihexyphenidyl) for now, at least but so I am also worrying as to whether it could make matters worse.

    Kind regards

  • My DBS is nearing its 4th anniversary. I have no tremor, which, for me, was so bad that I'd no longer go out in public.  Falling and memory issues ensued-/ perhaps they would have anyway.  Having four years tremor free, however, has been a blessing. While my life is not normal, it's far better without a tremor that controlled my life. I wish you both the best. There are no perfect answers-- just best options right now. For me DBS was the best option and I'm still glad I did it.  Best .,,👍🏻👍🏻🍀

  • Where did you have this done?  A lot of places do this procedure but not everyone is good at it.

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