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MRI-verified "asleep" deep brain stimulation in Malta through cross border collaboration: clinical outcome of the first five years

Chircop, C; Dingli, N; Aquilina, A; Zrinzo, L; Aquilina, J; (2018) MRI-verified "asleep" deep brain stimulation in Malta through cross border collaboration: clinical outcome of the first five years. British Journal of Neurosurgery , 32 (4) pp. 365-371. 10.1080/02688697.2018.1478061. Green open access

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Abstract

INTRODUCTION: Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) requires a specialist multidisciplinary approach and lifelong follow-up. Patient access can be a challenge for small nation states. Malta is an island nation with a population of just under 450 000. The number of patients likely to benefit from DBS is around 5 to 10 per year. This study explores the outcome of a cross border collaboration between specialist services at Queen Square, London and a tertiary centre in Malta. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Between 2011 and 2015, 35 patients underwent MRI-Guided and MRI-Verified DBS with 29 receiving bilateral subthalamic nucleus (STN) DBS for Parkinson's Disease under general anaesthesia. Pre-operative motor function was compared with one year post-operative motor function assessments in 26 patients (16 male; age 60 ± 9, range 32-70; disease duration 8.8 ± 2.7). Pre-operative and post-operative quality of life scores were also completed in 24 patients. RESULTS: There was significant improvement in off-medication Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale (UPDRS) III motor function (41.7%), reduction in Levodopa Equivalent Dose (LED) (30.6%) and improvement in quality of life as measured by the Parkinson's Disease Questionnaire (PDQ-39) (52.3%) (p < .001). All PDQ-39 dimensions showed significant improvement except communication, with greatest benefit in activities of daily living (ADLs) (72.4%) and stigma (66.3%). Surgical complications did not lead to any permanent deficit. Patients receiving DBS to other targets and for different indications also benefitted from surgery. CONCLUSION: An MRI-guided and MRI-verified approach to DBS was successfully implemented through cross border collaboration with achievement of expected clinical results. This healthcare collaboration developed out of necessity and opportunity, taking advantage of a UK-based neurosurgeon from Malta. The UK healthcare system benefits from numerous immigrants at Consultant level. Such a mutually beneficial arrangement could enable such individuals to offer their expertise to citizens in the UK as well as their country of origin.

Type: Article
Title: MRI-verified "asleep" deep brain stimulation in Malta through cross border collaboration: clinical outcome of the first five years
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/02688697.2018.1478061
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02688697.2018.1478061
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Deep Brain Stimulation, Malta, PDQ-39, UPDRS III, cross border collaboration, quality of life
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Clinical and Movement Neurosciences
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10054292
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