Movement Disorder Treatment Options

We use the latest treatments including medications, botulinum toxin (Botox), deep brain stimulation and intrathecal administration of baclofen and physical therapy. Our clinical trial program for investigation treatment is also very active. We employ the latest in technology for treatment and evaluation, yet try to incorporate the tried-and-true method of diligently listening to our patients and their families, and examining them carefully. Our team approach involves neurologists, neurosurgeons, neuropsychologists, physical therapists, speech therapists and others as appropriate.

Treatments for Movement Disorders

We offer the following treatments for functional movement disorders:


Chemodenervation with botulinum toxins for severe spasticity, muscle spasms, dystonia and other hyperkinetic disorders.


Intrathecal Baclofen Pump Therapy (ITB)
Baclofen is one of the medications used to treat spasticity (tight, stiff muscles making movement difficult or uncontrollable). The medication is delivered through a programmable pump that is surgically placed below the skin. A catheter runs from the pump to a location in the spine called the intrathecal space. Here the medication can be more effective and side effects can be minimized. The drug used is a liquid form of baclofen called Lioresal. ITB can be very effective for persons with spasticity in large muscle groups or the type of spasticity that increases with movement.


Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS)
The Functional & Movement Disorder Program at Houston Methodist Neurological Institute focuses on treating patients with conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, essential tremor, spasticity, chronic pain and some behavioral disorders, including obsessive compulsive disease. Surgical treatment for these conditions primarily involves implanting devices in what is called deep brain stimulation that help control symptoms.


Deep brain stimulation is a surgical treatment that has been proven to reduce some of the symptoms associated with Parkinson’s disease. In one major study, DBS was shown to increase periods of good mobility (no symptoms or involuntary excessive movements) from 27% to 74% of a patient's waking day. In another study, DBS maintained motor symptom improvements even after five years. DBS enables people with Parkinson's disease (PD) to have more control over their movements. The symptoms that DBS has been shown to reduce include stiffness, shaking (tremor), slowness, abnormal, involuntary movements called dyskinesia.


  • Deep brain stimulation procedure: At the Neurological Institute, Deep Brain Stimulator is implanted in the operating room. Neurosurgeon would place two small electrodes directly into the patient’s brain in the targeted area where the movement disorder originates, using sound to locate the precise location. The electrodes are attached to a neuro-stimulator the size of a heart pacemaker. The device can be turned on or off. A small electric pulse stimulates that precise part of the brain, immediately stopping the tremor, abnormal movements or rigidity.
  • Follow-up DBS care: Our movement disorder specialist works with patients in subsequent appointments to adjust the pacemaker to ensure it’s working optimally. As the symptoms of the disease progress, the brain pacemaker can be reprogrammed to provide continuing benefits. Also, deep brain stimulation is reversible and adjustable. If a cure is found for Parkinson’s disease, this device can be removed.