, Volume 28, Issue 7, pp 1091-1097
Date: 18 Mar 2012

Battery life following pallidal deep brain stimulation (DBS) in children and young people with severe primary and secondary dystonia

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The finite life of non-rechargeable batteries powering implantable pulse generators (IPG) necessitates their periodic replacement. Children receiving deep brain stimulation (DBS) may require frequent battery changes over their treatment lifetime.


We aimed to determine the battery life of IPGs used in pallidal DBS for the treatment of dystonia in children and young people.


We make use of a review of case notes of all children and young people undergoing DBS surgery at our institution from June 2005 to May 2010.


A total of 54 children and young people underwent surgery on at least one occasion, with a total of 76 IPGs implanted. Replacement IPGs due to battery failure were required in 15 out of 54 (27.8%). The average time to battery failure was 24.5 ± 2.9 months (95% confidence interval), with a range of 13–39 months. Battery life was significantly longer in primary compared to subsequent IPGs. No difference in longevity was seen between different IPG devices.


IPG battery life may be short in children and young people receiving treatment for dystonia. These findings highlight the potential benefits of the recently introduced rechargeable neurostimulators.