I read the article in The Saturday Evening Post about essential tremor and was so excited. I called my fiance and read it to him. We were both hoping that someday someone would start studying essential tremor. We can't find very much about it. We've joined support groups. They send articles perodically. I read every one of them.
All my fiance's doctors want to do is give him drugs, and they all make him druggy, so he won't take them.
We heard about a physician in Portland, Oregon, who did the brain surgery on a lady, and the very minute he did whatever he did in the brain, her right hand stopped shaking. The last time we heard, he was getting ready to do the left side, but we have not been able to find out the doctor's name or anything about all of it.
When my fiance gets upset in the least little bit, his hands shake unbelievably. We shall be waiting patiently for a reply.
Re: the article about essential tremor in the Sept./Oct. 2004 edition:
I found your article on essential tremor very interesting. My late husband had essential tremor beginning in his late 50s. He was a Baptist minister and the shaking in his hands was a great problem for him. He was always in the public eye. He retired early at age 62, and the tremor got worse.
His doctor at Wake Forest University Baptist Hospital sent him out to the University of Kansas Medical Center, where they were to begin a clinical trial with a device to help ET. He was the third one to have the operation. While he was awake, the doctor put tiny wire electrodes in his brain, and they were attached to a small battery-powered device in his chest. The battery was turned off and on with a magnet. This operation was done on March 16, 1994. To his delight, it controlled the tremor in his right hand. It remained controlled for two years and nine months.
On May 17, 1996, he was the first one to have the same operation to control his left hand. It was controlled for about 14 months.
In October 1997 wires were replaced on implant to control the right hand. The company making the wires and implant was Medtronic Neurological in Columbia Heights, Minnesota. They invited Larry to come and speak at their Christmas gala, and he spoke to 2,000 people. They taped it and I have enjoyed it.
My husband wasn't sure these operations would help him, but even if they didn't, he hoped the research would help others and especially his children, since it is hereditary. There was an article about Larry in Parade Magazine. After that he received phone calls from all over the United States from people with ET, asking about his experience. He said it seemed like it was his second ministry encouraging people. The local TV station in Winston-Salem interviewed him, as did the Winston-Salem Journal. I'm enclosing a copy of these articles.
I thought you might be interested in someone who had essential tremor and how he dealt with it.
Mrs. Lawrence L. Abt, Jr. East Bend, North Carolina
Editor's note: Essential tremor of the hands occurs usually when the hands are in use. Tremor from Parkinson ' s is most common when the hands are at rest.
No studies show that ET increases one's risk of getting Parkinson's.
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