Management of hardware infections following deep brain stimulation


Objective. To report our experience on hardware-related infections following deep brain stimulation (DBS).

Methods. The present article presents the retrospective clinical notes review of gained in a two-centre, single-surgeon study experience of 108 consecutive DBS cases between 1996 and 2002. In all patients the minimum follow-up was six months. One hundred and eight patients received an intracerebral electrode implantation and 106 underwent internalization.

Results. In total 178 electrodes were implanted with a mean follow-up of 42.6 months and a cumulative follow-up of 367.7 patient-years. Four patients (3.8%) developed an infection related to the DBS-hardware and all were initially treated with antibiotics. Two patients eventually required additional surgical treatment.

Conclusion. Infections due to DBS-hardware can result in considerable levels of morbidity. In certain cases antibiotic therapy may be adequate. In others, surgical intervention to externalise the electrodes may be necessary. In our experience, there was never a need to remove the electrodes.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Author information



Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Temel, Y., Ackermans, L., Celik, H. et al. Management of hardware infections following deep brain stimulation. Acta Neurochir 146, 355–361 (2004).

Download citation

  • Keywords: Deep brain stimulation (DBS); high frequency stimulation (HFS); infection; implants; complications; antibiotics.