Active Stabilization: Liftware

A new device claims to help stabilize tremor in hands. Liftware is an electronic stabilizer that uses a microchip and sensors to detect the direction and force of a user's tremor, before motoring a spoon (or other attachment) in the opposite direction to cancel out the movement as best it can.

You can see that the effects are quite dramatic, especially when using it to eat when compared to a regular spoon. The stabilizer allows the patient's hand to shake (due to Essential Tremor or Parkinson's), which is unique because it doesn't affect the person in any way. Liftware has gone through clinical trials, and more information can be found on the company's website.

Liftware started as adaptive equipment for eating, but its makers plan to offer additional attachments that can be fitted to the handle in place of a spoon. A fork, a soup spoon, and, perhaps most interestingly, a keyholder are all listed as "coming soon" on the Liftware website.

Surgical Intervention: Deep Brain Stimulation

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is a fascinating medical device that is implanted inside the brain to act as a sort of "pacemaker". Despite the fact that it has been used for a while the underlying mechanism of how it works is not clear. Still, it is very useful in treating extreme cases of Essential Tremor and Parkinson's Disease. The procedure is reversible, since the implanted electrodes can simply be removed should the need arise.

Deep brain stimulation requires some sophisticated technologies in order to function. A surgeon must implant tiny electrodes in a very precise location in the brain (the Thalamus for Essential Tremor). If the electrodes are mis-placed, certain functions such as language can be affected, so it is important to monitor the patient during and after the surgery.