March is Essential Tremor Awareness Month
In late December 2010, the U.S. House of Representatives officially designated the month of March as National Essential Tremor Awareness Month. We invite you to get involved in helping us raise awareness in communities throughout the U.S. and abroad. With 10 million Americans alone affected by this life-altering condition and a general lack of public understanding, we need your help to spread the word.
Check our website to learn what you can do in your community to bring a greater understanding of ET. Remember, a single voice is seldom heard, but a thousand voices can shake the world!
Participating in Research
Choosing to participate in clinical research is an important decision, so you should understand the benefits and risks before agreeing to be part of any study. For example, participating in research often gives you access to an experimental treatment before it is widely available. However, because the treatment is new, the effects might not be well understood. Who is in charge of the study? What is the study trying to find out? What will be expected of you? It is important to get the answers to these and other questions to fully understand the study and how it could impact you. For more information, check out these resources:
- Read IETF member publications for updates: The Scoop research newsletter and Tremor Talk, our member magazine.
- Contact the Center for Information and Study on Clinical Research Participation (CISCRP). CISCRP is an independent nonprofit that aims to educate and promote clinical research participation. Find out more by phone at 888-247-2773 or online at ciscrp.org.
- How is the safety of the participant protected? ClinicalTrials.gov answers this and other frequently asked questions about clinical research studies.
High School Kids Design Assistive Device for ET
Bishop Kelly High School’s Engineering Design team, based in Boise, Idaho, is developing two assistive tools that may one day assist people with essential tremor (ET). These tools are being developed by the team as they participate in the 2011-2012 Lemelson-MIT InvenTeam program. The student team received a major grant of nearly $10,000 to invent and refine these tools. This nine-month project culminates in the June 2012 debut of the finished prototype device at EurekaFest held at MIT in Boston. The IETF is honored to co-sponsor this dedicated group of kids and underwrite travel expenses for the team to make the Boston trip.
Brain Biochemistry Study Finds No PD Link
Researcher Dr. Holly Shill, Director of the Christopher Center for Parkinson Research at Sun Health Research Institute, recently published the article “Brain Biochemistry in Autopsied Patients with Essential Tremor” in Movement Disorders. This study builds on previous research funded by the IETF.
"This latest study is the logical next step. First, we looked at pathology," says Dr. Shill. "Then, we looked at biochemistry in this current publication as that may be a more sensitive measure. I think we have really ruled out a significant link between PD and ET. Also, this current study says that the adrenalin system does not seem to be primarily affected in ET. However, it does suggest a role of the GABA system that warrants more investigation."
This study concludes that there is no link between essential tremor and the development of Parkinson’s disease. This is good news for those affected by ET.
Read the full report here.
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Hope. Awareness. Research. Support.
International Essential Tremor Foundation