EVT is a refractory voice disorder that significantly affects quality of life. This work aims to conduct a multiparametric assessment of the effect of deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the thalamic ventral intermediate nucleus (VIM) on essential vocal tremor (EVT) and investigate the relation between DBS lead location and EVT outcomes.Nine participants underwent DBS for essential tremor and were diagnosed with co-occurring EVT in this prospective cohort study. Objective measurements including acoustic evaluation of vocal fundamental frequency (F0) and intensity modulation and subjective measurements including physiologic evaluation of the oscillatory movement of the laryngeal muscles and vocal tract and perceptual ratings of tremor severity were collected PRE and POST DBS. Finally, we investigated the relation between DBS lead location and EVT outcomes.Acoustic modulations of F0 and intensity were significantly improved POST DBS. Physiologic assessment showed a POST DBS reduction of oscillatory movement in the laryngeal muscles and vocal tract, but not significantly. Listener and participant perception, of EVT severity was also significantly reduced. Finally, our results indicate better EVT control with increased distance to midline of left VIM thalamic stimulation.By employing a battery of objective and subjective measures, our study supports the benefit of DBS for the treatment of EVT and specifies the acoustic and physiologic mechanisms that mediate its positive effect. We further provide preliminary results on the relation between lead location and EVT outcomes, laying the foundation for future studies to clarify the optimal DBS target for the treatment of EVT.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.parkreldis.2020.10.026
View details for PubMedID 33120071