It was nearly four weeks after his 45th birthday when Bill Schmalfeldt was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. In addition to having to get used to having what he always though of as a old man’s disease, Bill had to adjust to the idea that his condition would only deteriorate. After seven years, Bill learned about an experimental clinical trial of deep brain stimulation for patients in the less-advanced stages of Parkinson’s. He was one of 30 people to sign up for this Phase I trial testing the safety and tolerability of the procedure. In this group, 15 patients were randomized to the surgical group while 15 were asked to just continue taking their medicine as before so they could be compared to the surgical group in the months and years to come.
Bill takes you into the operating room with him, remaining awake as twin probes are carefully advanced deep into the subthalamic nuclei of his brain. He also shares his life before the surgery and his life afterwards — including the mixed results he is currently experiencing.
The author’s proceeds from the sale of this book and/or download will be donated to the National Parkinson Foundation to assist in their marvelous work towards finding a cure and new and better treatments for PD.