Essential Tremor: Answers to Difficult Questions
Each year millions of people are diagnosed with ET or more commonly known as essential tremors. ET is a neurological disorder that affects a part of the human brain that is responsible for controlling the movement of an individual. Most patients start to experience minor signs during their early forties until it progresses in a couple of years.
Having been diagnosed with essential tremor is something that you should take very seriously. Although it is not a life-threatening disease, it can affect your quality of life, especially if you do not receive the proper treatment.
There was a discovery that a significant number of medical practitioners had misdiagnosed essential tremors for the past years. This resulted in a faster progression of the patient’s condition as well as poor quality of life. That is why both patients and family members must gain more knowledge about essential tremors. So they would know how to manage the condition effectively and be able to live comfortably and independently. Here are some of the most common and yet challenging questions that people with essential tremors needs to know.
What are the common signs of ET?
- Shaking voice and hands
- Tremors can aggravate during stressful conditions
- Involuntary head movement ( nodding on certain times)
If you notice any of these symptoms happening to you or your loved ones do not hesitate to seek medical help for proper diagnosis m
What are the treatment options for patients?
People with essential tremors can opt to take oral medicines to help manage the tremors making movement easier. Doctors recommend the following medications for newly diagnosed patient s with minor symptoms.
- Botox ( used to treat voice and head tremors)
If the patient tried several types of drugs, and it did not work, there is an option for him to undergo Neuravive treatment. It is a non-invasive procedure that uses ultrasound to treat the portion of the brain that causes the tremors. The patient would have to use the MRI machine that would serve as a guide during the entire procedure. Patients who have undergone Neuravive have reported significant progress on their condition.
If the tremors of the patient are severe and debilitating, another option is surgery. A surgeon will have to do a small incision and insert a thin wire to the part of the brain that causes the tremor. However, this is a risky procedure that should be discussed thoroughly with your physician.
How does ET affect the patient and family?
Patients diagnosed with ET can experience significant changes in their lifestyle. He can experience difficulty doing simple tasks such as eating, cooking, dressing, bathing, and driving. If the condition progresses, the patient does not have any choice but to ask for assistance. This would require relatives to provide round the clock care if necessary.
Lastly, you can do other things to improve the quality of life of the patient with ET. Hiring an occupational therapist to assist in ADL can help a lot.
I have been diagnosed with Essential Tremor in my lower lip since I was 60 . It moves only when I drink something , putting weight on the lip and occasionally when I talk . At rest there is no movement . I am 78 and have experienced a very small amount of worse movement over 18 years . I don’t take medication .