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Essential Tremor

Essential tremor is a movement disorder, meaning it affects parts of the brain that control body movement (motor function).   It is a type of involuntary shaking movement for which no cause can be identified, and it is often a symptom of another condition, such as:

  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Dystonia

The shaking is very rapid, generally more than five times a second Essential tremor is the most common type of tremor and is mainly found in people over age 65. An essential tremor is not dangerous or life-threatening, but it can be annoying and embarrassing for many people.

In some cases, it may be dramatic enough to interfere with:

  • Writing 
  • Eating 
  • Drinking
  • Speaking

Several treatment options can help control symptoms of essential tremor. People whose symptoms have not responded well to medication alone may be candidates for deep brain stimulation Essential tremor, like many movement disorders, can be treated but not cured.   

Treatment options depend on:

  • The severity of symptoms 
  • Condition of the person
  • Deep brain stimulation delivers electrical stimulation to targeted areas in the brain that control movement, blocking the neuronal signals that cause abnormal movement. DBS gives significant benefit in most of the people who undergo the procedure for essential tremor.