“They complement each other, they don’t replace each other. They are both invasive­...at the end of the day something is happening inside the brain.”

The interest in using non-drug interventions for movement disorders such as essential tremor or Parkinson disease has grown in recent years. Many clinicians have turned to focused ultrasound (FUS) and deep brain stimulation (DBS) to provide benefit to a wide variety of patients in varying ways.

Andre Machado, MD, PhD, Institute Chair, Neurological Institute, Cleveland Clinic, is all too familiar with these methods of treatment—as well as their differences. In a conversation with NeurologyLive, he explained how those differences actually allow FUS and DBS to be used in a complementary fashion in some instances. He also shed light on the various situations and patient populations in which he finds them most useful.

Additionally, Machado spoke to the differences in invasiveness between the 2 procedures, noting that while DBS requires surgery, it can technically be considered less invasive due to the impermanence of its effects compared to FUS, which causes a permanent ablation.