Traditional Trial and Error versus Neuroanatomic 3-Dimensional Image Software-Assisted Deep Brain Stimulation Programming in Patients with Parkinson Disease

Nicola Pavese, Yen F Tai, Nada Yousif, Dipankar Nandi, Peter G Bain

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Programming deep brain stimulation (DBS) settings in patients with Parkinson disease (PD) is challenging and time consuming because of the vast number of possible parameter combinations. This results in long sessions that can be exhausting for the patients and physicians. GUIDE (Boston Scientific) is a 3-dimensional neuroanatomic visual software that precisely visualizes the location of the DBS electrode in the subthalamic nucleus (STN). The objective of this paper is to compare the duration and clinical effects of traditional trial and error versus GUIDE-assisted DBS programming in 10 patients with PD treated with STN DBS. Methods: For each patient, neurostimulation parameters were selected with GUIDE to create a stimulation field encompassing the dorsal part of the STN. On programming day, each patient was assessed with both traditional and GUIDE approaches using a crossover design. For GUIDE-assisted sessions, the patients were programmed directly with the DBS settings obtained with the stimulated field model, and if necessary, parameters were adjusted to achieve optimal clinical response. Clinical improvement was assessed with Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale scores for limb bradykinesia, tremor, and rigidity. Results: In 7 patients, DBS settings obtained with GUIDE led to suboptimal clinical improvement and mild adjustments were required. After these adjustments, the magnitude of clinical improvement with the 2 approaches was comparable (P = 0.8219). Programming time with GUIDE was significantly shorter than with the traditional programming approach (P < 0.0001). Conclusions: Visualization of stimulation fields with GUIDE provides useful information to achieve a clinical improvement comparable with that obtained with the traditional trial and error approach, but with shorter and more efficient programming sessions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e98-e102
JournalWorld Neurosurgery
Early online date27 Sept 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2020


  • Deep brain stimulation
  • Parkinson disease
  • Subthalamic
  • Visual software
  • Globus Pallidus/physiopathology
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional/methods
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Male
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Deep Brain Stimulation/methods
  • Parkinson Disease/physiopathology
  • Subthalamic Nucleus/physiopathology
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Aged
  • Software
  • Tremor/etiology


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