The last ten years have been challenging for Billy R. Williams of Fort Valley, Virginia. The former Pentagon employee, who survived the 9/11 terrorist attack, has suffered from essential tremor, a progressive and debilitating neurological disorder.
Medications controlled his tremor for a while, but eventually the shaking became so severe that Williams found it impossible to do anything with his dominant right hand. He was unable to button his shirt, eat without spilling or fill in a crossword puzzle. An avid golfer, he even needed help teeing up his ball. Referred to the University of Virginia for evaluation, he learned about various treatment options and ultimately agreed to participate in a new clinical trial. Funded by the FUS Foundation, the study is assessing the safety and initial efficacy of noninvasive MR-guided focused ultrasound as a treatment for essential tremor.
On February 25, 2011, Williams became the first essential tremor patient in the world to receive MR-guided focused ultrasound therapy, and the results were dramatically positive.
- Written by Ellen C., McKenna
Click here for study information posted on the National Institutes of Health website. Patient inquiries can be directed to UVA Neurosurgery Clinical Trials at 434-243-1435 or by emailing