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Deep Brain Stimulation Symposium

The University of Pittsburgh Department of Neurological Surgery and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine Center for Continuing Education in the Health Sciences will present a symposium on Deep Brain Stimulation, September 19, 2014, for neurologists, primary care physicians, physician assistants, nurses, psychiatrists and other healthcare professionals involved in the management and treatment of tremor, Parkinson's disease, dystonia and obsessive compulsive behavior.

Deep Brain Stimulation is a surgical procedure involving placement of a small device, sometimes known as a "brain pacemaker," to manage electrical impulses of select areas of the brain believed to cause the pathology. Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) can surpass the ability of medications alone to improve quality of life for appropriately selected patients.

This symposium will provide an overview of Deep Brain Stimulation, preoperative evaluation, postoperative management, and outcome expectations. New technologies will be discussed as well as the recently FDA-approved Responsive Neurostimulation System (RNS) for epilepsy. Interactive sessions will include case presentations from UPMC, including the very moving case of Parkinson's Disease patient David Smith (see the video below).

In addition to physicians, nurses and PAs receiving continuing medical education credits, this course is open to patients, family members and community advocates.

This event has been endorsed by the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society (MDS).

See other patient stories:
Karen Larson, Essential Tremor
Moreland Lysher, Parkinson's Disease
Dennis Graham, Parkinson's Disease
Martha Ezzell, Essential Tremor with Voice Tremor

Date and Location

Friday, September 19, 2014

The University Club at the University of Pittsburgh
123 University Place
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

Course Director and Faculty

R. Mark Richardson, MD, PhD
Course Director
Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery
DirectorBrain Stimulation and Epilepsy Surgery Program
Director, Brain Modulation Laboratory

Sarah Berman, MD, PhD
Assistant Professor of Neurology

Houman Homayoun, MD
Assistant Professor of Neurology

Robert Howland, MD
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

Robert Hudak, MD
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

Jamie Pardini, PhD
Assistant Professor of Neurological Surgery

Alexandra Popescu, MD
Medical Director, Epilepsy Surgery Program
Assistant Professor of Neurology

Valerie Suski, DO
Medical Director, Deep Brain Stimulation Program
Assistant Professor of Neurology


8:00 a.m.
Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30 a.m.

8:35 a.m.
Introduction to Course – Overview of Brain Stimulation
Mark Richardson, MD, PhD

Session 1:

8:45 a.m.
DBS for Parkinson’s Disease: Scientific Background
Houman Homayoun, MD

9:15 a.m.
DBS for Parkinson Disease: Patient Selection
Sarah Berman, MD, PhD

9:45 a.m.
DBS for Essential Tremor and Dystonia
Valerie Suski, DO

10:15 a.m.

10:45 a.m.
Neuropsychological Assessment of DBS Candidates
Jamie Pardini, PhD

11:15 a.m.
DBS Surgery – Targets and Techniques, Awake and Asleep Procedures
Mark Richardson, MD, PhD

12:00 p.m.

Session 2:

1:00 p.m.
Case Presentations from UPMC and Demonstration of DBS Effects
Valerie Suski, DO, Sarah Berman MD, PhD, Houman Homayoun MD

1:45  p.m.
DBS for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Robert Hudak, MD

2:15  p.m.
DBS for Depression
Robert Howland, MD

2:30  p.m.
Responsive Neurostimulation for Epilepsy
Alexandra Popescu, MD

3:15  p.m.
Future Directions in Brain Stimulation
Mark Richardson, MD, PhD

3:45 p.m.
Question and Answer Session

4:00 p.m.
Closing Remarks

CME Credits

The University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The University of Pittsburgh designates this live activity for a maximum of 6.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Other healthcare professionals are awarded 0.6 Continuing Education Unit (CEU’s) which are equal to 6.0 contact hours.


Early registration (before August 19): $75
Registration on or after August 19: $100
Nurse, Physician Assistant or other: $50
Community Member: $25

Registration fee includes continuing education credit, course materials, continental breakfast and lunch, panel discussions, and parking at Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hall directly across the street from the University Club.


Registration for this course is available online through September 12 on the UPMC Center for Continuing Education in the Health Sciences website.

  • Scroll to Better Quality of Life: Brain Stimulation for Movement Disorders, OCD, and Epilepsy.
  • Click the Click HERE to Register button and enter all the requested information (including an e-mail address) and follow the prompts to submit your registration after entering your payment information.
  • After registering, an electronic confirmation will be sent to the e-mail address you provided us when you registered. Please note: Registration is not complete until you receive this confirmation. If you do not receive this confirmation, please contact us at (412) 864-1839. You must bring this confirmation letter with you to the conference.

For more information on the course, or to register via paper registration, please contact:

Tara Wilson
Department of Neurological Surgery
UPMC Presbyterian
Suite B-400
200 Lothrop Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
e-mail: wilsontl3@upmc.edu
Phone: (412) 864-1839
Fax: (412) 864-3441

All pre-registration for this course must be completed by September 12, 2014. After this date, registration can only take place the day of the course.

Cancellation: All cancellations must be in writing and must be sent via U.S. Mail, e-mail or fax. Tuition for cancellations postmarked or date stamped before September 5, 2014 will be completely refunded. After September 5, 2014, a $50 administrative fee will be assessed. No refunds will be made after September 12, 2014.

Special Needs

Participation be all individuals is encouraged. Advance notice of any special needs will help us provide better service. Please notify us of your needs at least two weeks in advance of the program by calling (412) 864-1839.