Medtronic Launches Activa(R) DBS Devices in Canada to Treat Disabling Motor Symptoms and Allow Tailored Programming
BRAMPTON, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 16, 2010) -
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Medtronic (NYSE:MDT) announces the market launch of Activa(R) RC (Rechargeable Cell) and Activa(R) PC (Primary Cell) neurostimulators, the most innovative deep brain stimulation therapy (DBS) to help patients with neurodegenerative disorders to control their symptoms. The first Canadian implantation of the new device took place at the Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Centre in Halifax, Nova Scotia by Dr. Ivar Mendez, Head of the Division of Neurosurgery, and his team.
Activa RC and Activa PC are the next generation devices added to Medtronic's DBS therapy portfolio. The Activa RC and Activa PC offers innovative new programming tools, smaller size neurostimulators and a rechargeable neurostimulator lasting up to nine (9) years between battery replacement surgery. The new patient programmer will enable patients the freedom to choose different programs to suit their diverse activities. As a result, patients suffering from involuntary movements caused by conditions like Parkinson's disease, essential tremor, and primary dystonia can now have more control of disabling motor symptoms. Patients are able to adjust their therapy within the parameters chosen by their physician, allowing increased movement control. Patients will also benefit from greater comfort because the new devices are up to 50 percent smaller in size than previous versions.
"The new DBS device allows patients to recharge the batteries of their device without the need of a surgical intervention. This new system is likely to have a significant beneficial impact on patients that require high levels of energy to control their symptoms," said Dr. Mendez. "These types of technological advances improve our ability to treat our patients and provide them with longer and sustained relief."
Over 233,000(1)(2) patients in Canada suffer from neurodegenerative disorders which can cause disability and impaired functioning.(3)(4) Medtronic DBS therapy brings powerful, long-term improvements to motor functions and quality of life in patients with primary dystonia(5) and essential tremor(6) and is the most efficacious therapy to enhance quality of life in patients with Parkinson's disease.(7) Medtronic DBS therapy is fully reversible and has a favourable safety profile.(8)
In addition to patient benefits, the use of Medtronic DBS therapy has also been shown to provide major savings to our healthcare system. For instance, by reducing the medication required by patients with Parkinson's disease following DBS, and minimising the need for follow up visits for patients with dystonia once optimal therapeutic settings have been determined, research has shown significant savings in cost and time.(9)
Through mild electrical stimulation, DBS therapy blocks signals within the brain that are responsible for debilitating motor symptoms, such as stiffness, slowness of movement and shaking. These electrical pulses are delivered through the extension and lead to symptom-specific brain areas called globus pallidus internus (GPi), subthalamic nucleus (STN) or ventral intermediate nucleus of the thalamus (Vim).
With Activa RC, patients can recharge their stimulator in the comfort of their home with a wearable charging system that connects to the neurostimulator, ensuring maximum recharging while the patient goes about their daily activities, and use a patient programmer to monitor when the battery requires charging.
For the first time these devices also store records related to the benefits or side effects associated with various programming parameters which will allow programming to be easily and carefully optimized over time based on individual patient response.
Medtronic, Inc. (www.medtronic.com) (NYSE:MDT), headquartered in Minneapolis, is the global leader in medical technology - alleviating pain, restoring health and extending life for millions of people around the world.
About Medtronic of Canada Ltd.
Medtronic of Canada sells, services, and distributes Medtronic products in Canada: medical devices used in cardiovascular medicine, diabetes, spinal and neurosurgery, and ear, nose and throat surgery. Medtronic of Canada employs over 420 Canadians, it is headquartered in Brampton, Ontario, has an Operations Centre in Mississauga and regional offices in Vancouver and Montreal and an atrial fibrillation (AF) ablation catheter manufacturing facility - Medtronic CryoCath - in the Montreal metropolitan area.
About the Queen Elizabeth II Health Centre
Located in the heart of Halifax, Nova Scotia, the QEII is the largest adult academic health sciences centre in Atlantic Canada. If you need to be referred for specialized care, and you're an adult from Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island or New Brunswick, you will likely come to the QEII. Working closely with health care providers in the community, other local hospitals and health care education programs, the QEII also provides general hospital services for the residents of Capital Health.
Louis ED, Ottman R, Hauser WA. How common is the most common adult movement disorder? Estimates the prevalence of essential tremor throughout the world. Mov Disord 1988;13:803-808.