INSIGHTEC has announced that The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) issued a positive NICE guidance for unilateral MRI-guided focused ultrasound thalamotomy for treatment-resistant essential tremor (ET). ET affects more than one million people in the UK and impacts their ability to perform everyday tasks due to uncontrollable shaking of their hands.
The Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust is the first and only site in the UK with the Exablate Neuro technology to treat essential tremor. To date 16 patients with ET have been treated at St. Mary’s by an expert, multidisciplinary team including Wladyslaw Gedroyc, Consultant Radiologist, Peter Bain, Consultant Neurologist and Dipankar Nandi, Consultant Neurosurgeon.
“Essential tremor patients treated at St Mary’s have experienced very substantial improvement in the severity of their tremor as well as their quality of life,” commented Dipankar Nandi, Consultant Neurosurgeon and Head of Department, St Mary’s Hospital, Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust. “In addition, the safety profile is favorable with minor, often temporary side effects experienced by this group.”
During the treatment, ultrasound waves pass safely through the skull to ablate a tiny spot in the brain considered to be responsible for the tremor. The result is often an immediate improvement of the tremor in the treated hand. Due to the incisionless nature of focused ultrasound, there is no risk of infection and patients recover quickly.
“The positive NICE guidance adds to the growing body of positive health technology determinations for incisionless brain surgery using INSIGHTEC’s Exablate Neuro,” said Maurice R. Ferré, chief executive officer and chairman of the Board of INSIGHTEC. “This is a critical step toward increased patient access to our technology around the globe.”