Parkinson's tremor: This may have been... - Parkinson's Movement

Parkinson's Movement

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Parkinson's tremor


This may have been addressed before but I'm new to the site. One of the ways that I've learned to minimize my tremor between doses is to slowly move my finger on the hand that is tremoring back and forth or in a circle on my leg, chair arm, or just about anywhere. As most of you know a tremor is nonexistent or significantly minimized when you're walking or moving. I suspect this is basically a similar action. I am guessing that by pressing lightly with the finger or fingers of the tremor hand it interrupts the signal or lack of signal that leads to tremor. So here's my question. Has anybody else tried this technique? Has anybody heard of the device that can be worn on the hand or anywhere that will gently stimulate the nerve endings thereby interrupting the tremor? If not, does anybody know an engineer who might be interested in pursuing this as an option?



15 Replies

Funny you should say this as I have thought about using my TENS Unit on my tremor side......may have to try that tonight.

cknicely in reply to Jeni

I did use my tens unit. i thought it didn't work until my wife said where is your tremor? I don't know why it works but it does. I had to dial it in but once i did it works for me.

finlander in reply to Jeni

By all means, let us know how this works out for you!

landman in reply to Jeni

What is a TENS Unit?

Bocabarby in reply to landman

Did you find out what a Tens unit is?

A tens unit is a "transcutaneous electroneural stimulator" device. it was originally developed to help block pain signals from various parts of the body from reaching the brain. Trans-cutaneous means it works through the nerve endings in the skin. it is generally used for relieving pain in the extremities or the back and the neck.

It is a small batttery-powered device that has wires coming out of it, which lead to 2 electrode patches, made out of cloth on one side and conductive black rubber on the side that touches the skin.

My unit has two separate output channels, so you can have four patches running at once. You use a water-soluble conductive electric 'gel", which is sticky, to keep the patches glued to the skin.

It runs off of a 9 volt can buy rechargeable batteries and a small inexpensive battery charger that can charge two batteries at once.

It has various programmed settings and a control which allows you to set the output level for each of the two channels. Mine just got ruined because it was lying on a shelf and a tube of the electrode gel got squished and covered the whole front panel and the digital display in a horrible mess of sticky glue, so that's why I'm online looking to buy a new one.

Ideally, you put one electrode on one side of the body and the other one on the other side of the body, so that the current goes across the spinal cord. But it will work even if both electrodes are on the same side, as in two electrodes on the same arm.

You can set the program you want, the intensity level of the current, and how long the program will run. You can also set it to run constantly until you turn it off.

I usually set mine on constant operation, especially when trying to do physical activities that might generate pain (like standing on risers to sing in a choir concert, through a long dress rehearsal and then a whole concert.

I found that I would initially set the output fairly low, but as time passed either the battery would start to weaken or the nerves would "get used to" the current and I would need to keep setting the level higher over a few hours.

There are several drawbacks to the unit I had/have....First is an alarm tone that sounds if a plug comes out or an electrode comes off, etc. You can't silence the alarm, so I was in constant fear of interrupting a concert with a loud beeping sound, worse than most cel phones ringing.

The other problem was the "tacky" gel getting smeared around under my clothing and then my shirt would stick to the glue and any kind of motion would pull one or both electrode patches off.

The units do help to alleviate many kinds of pain, except for a deep internal pain such as an intestinal cramp or pain from something like an ulcer.

The really worst thing was if an electrode would come partially dislodged and the current did not shut off. What was a comfortable level of current with the patch properly attached could suddenly become a surprisingly painful, burning pain because the current was only contacting a very small area of skin!! Who knew that a 9 volt battery could cause that kind of pain??!!

So if I was at home and quietly watching TV and not moving very much for hours, it kept me from taking so many pain pills.

However, being very active and standing and sitting down a lot, or having to tuck in a shirt tail or pull up my pants during a concert just did not work out. Using both channels at once meant two more wires running under clothing, more glue and more chances of pulling an electrode the whole way off and setting of an alarm, or getting zapped with some very high current in a small area very suddenly. It took a few seconds to turn the thing off....

Now I have developed essential tremor (hopefully not from Parkinson's) but I can hardly print my name or sign a greeting card, had trouble eating my Thanksgiving dinner today (fork was shaking) and trying to load a glass fusing kiln with little bits of slippery glass held together very loosely with glue became another new problem.

Worst of all, I can't play any of my woodwind instruments, including an expensive flute, a bunch of "penny whistles" in various keys to play Irish and other folk music. For some reason I can still play the mandolin I bought....different muscles I guess..

So as a musician it has ruined a lot of my fun in life. I have narcolepsy too and can't drive now, so my fun level was already severely affected due to that

There is some research being done on using TENS units to reduce essential tremor, and Microsoft is working on a wrist watch that uses small vibrations to trick the nerves into not going berserk while trying to play the theme music from Titanic on my favorite little whistle...

Sorry this was so long, I have to take Ritalin to stay awake and it gives me verbal "motor-mouth" (sigh)


Would a copper bangle work I wonder

it is a great idea if you have a tremor (which i do not) but i shall pass it on to my PARKY FRIENDS WHO DO HAVE THE PROBLEM



my brother is having a brain scan next week anyone know why ? and he still has not had any medication come through to his doctor

shrekie in reply to zegal

are they doing a D A T scan?

zegal in reply to shrekie

do not know but will be going with him so i shall ask i think the doctor at the hospital mentioned something about a scan for a stroke but can't really remember will find out more on the 12th

shrekie in reply to zegal

the dat scan is just for park and tremors

Thanks for the suggestion...I had not heard of it before, but I plan on mentioning it to my PD support group

Best wishes,



Hello, I was searching any infos on a particular device and I have found your post.

I am looking into spending money on this device

Have you or someone have tried it ? Any recommendation or warnings?

Any other device not using medications , I am taking 12/day Sinemet .

Good luck & best to all


ParlePark in reply to Bouffere85

I tried it. Did nothing for my tremors at all. Returned it.

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