For all deep brain stimulation procedures, regardless of whether it is performed awake or asleep, DBS generator placement is the final surgical phase of the procedure. The generator is placed just under the skin in the collarbone area. Similar to a pacemaker, the DBS generator sends tiny electrical impulses to the brain via electrodes, which are placed in the previous DBS surgery.
For most patients, DBS generator placement surgery can take place in an outpatient setting and you can go home the same day. The procedure is done under general anesthesia.
FAQs About DBS Generator Placement
Continue reading below to learn more about the DBS generator placement or go directly to the topic that interests you by clicking on one of these links:
- Where is my DBS generator placement surgery performed?
- What do I need to do before my DBS generator placement surgery?
- What do I need to do the day of my DBS generator placement surgery?
- What will recovery from DBS generator placement surgery be like?
- What symptoms after DBS generator placement should I be concerned about?
Conditions We Treat
Where is my DBS generator placement surgery performed?
The Functional Neurosurgical Ambulatory Surgery Center (FNASC) offers patients the convenience of having their DBS generator placed and programmed in an outpatient setting and going home the same day. FNASC is a state-of-the-art freestanding surgery center created by Denver DBS Center and Littleton Adventist Hospital. In rare occasions, you may have your generator placed at Littleton Adventist Hospital.
What do I need to do before my DBS generator placement surgery?
Each patient is unique and will receive detailed, personalized instructions when their DBS generator placement surgery is scheduled. In general, you should do the following unless your neurosurgeon tells you not to.
- Stop taking any blood-thinning medications, including aspirin and ibuprofen, 7 days before the procedure.
- Continue taking Parkinson’s or seizure medications and any blood pressure medications until the day of surgery.
- The night before your procedure, shower using a special antibacterial soap called chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) from the neck down. Do not use CHG on your face or above the neck.
- Not eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery and do not drink alcohol for 24 hours before the procedure.
What do I need to do the day of my DBS generator placement surgery?
On the day of your surgery, we request that you:
- Do not eat or drink after midnight the night before surgery and that you not drink alcohol for 24 hours before the procedure.
- Take any medications needed the day of surgery with a very small amount of water.
- Shower again before coming to FNASC using chlorhexidine gluconate (CHG) antibacterial soap from the neck down. Do not use CHG on your face or above the neck.
- Leave jewelry and valuables at home and remove all makeup before arriving.
- Wear a shirt that buttons rather than one that must be pulled on over your head, as the procedure is performed on your upper torso.
- Arrange for a loved one, friend, or other transportation home, as you will not be allowed to drive following the procedure due to general anesthesia.
What will recovery from DBS generator placement surgery be like?
After your surgery:
- You may be drowsy for several hours after the procedure, so plan on resting when you return home. However, it is a good idea to take brief walks several times the day of surgery and the day after.
- We recommend that you drink plenty of fluids and slowly return to your normal diet.
- When you leave FNASC, we will provide you with specific instructions for what you can and cannot do for the next few days or weeks, as well as personalized instructions about medications. In general, though, for the first 24 hours, patients should not:
- Drive a vehicle or operate machinery
- Drink alcoholic beverages
- Although you may experience soreness at the incision site, you should be able to resume most normal activities the next day, including showering. You may remove the dressings from the surgery site, but don’t remove the Steri-Strips™.
- For several weeks after the procedure, most patients should avoid:
- Strenuous activity
- Raising arms overhead
- Lifting anything heavier than 10 pounds
What symptoms after DBS generator placement should I be concerned about?
If you have any questions or concerns, you should not hesitate to call your surgeon. You also can call FNASC at:
- 303-955-5555 or 720-524-7062.
Please call your surgeon or FNASC if you experience:
- Fever of 101 F or above
- Sudden pain you have not experienced before
- Cloudy drainage from the surgery site
- Redness, warmth, or firmness around the surgical site
- Persistent nausea or vomiting
- Bleeding or oozing from the surgery site that does not stop after applying pressure for 10 minutes
- Increased swelling or numbness of the fingers or toes