Focused Ultrasound
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Focused ultrasound

Focused ultrasound

Focused ultrasound (FUS) is a non-invasive, image-guided surgical technology that uses ultrasound energy to target specific areas of the brain and body in the treatment, or investigation of safety and efficacy in a number of indications including; essential tremor, Alzheimer’s, and uterine fibroids. It is considered to be scalpel-free, avoiding incisions to the skin. Sunnybrook is a global leader in FUS research and clinical trials.

Timeline of accomplishments in focused ultrasound

View some of our research accomplishments in timeline below, organized in reverse chronology. 
Click through the dates in the timeline below to view more photos and milestones

  1. 100th essential tremor patient treated

    August 2018 - 100th Sunnybrook patient is treated for essential tremor with focused ultrasound since our researchers revolutionized this non-invasive world first procedure in 2012. Learn more.

    100th patient to be treated with focused ultrasound for essential tremor with care team.Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  2. Major depression

    May 2018 - North American first trial to investigate the safety and effectiveness of FUS for patients with major depression. Learn more.

    Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  3. ALS

    April 2018 - World first: Sunnybrook researchers begin a study investigating the safety and feasibility of using MRI-guided focused ultrasound to open the blood-brain barrier of the motor cortex in patients with ALS. Sunnybrook is the only centre pursuing this kind of work with ALS patients. Learn more.

    Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  4. Alzheimer's disease

    May 2017 - Sunnybrook researchers made history launching the world’s first clinical trial to evaluate the safety and feasibility of using focused ultrasound to open the blood-brain barrier in people with Alzheimer’s disease. Learn more.

    https://sunnybrook.ca/research/media/item.asp?c=34&i=1562&page=18496&f=alzheimers-focused-ultrasound-blood-brain-barrierClick through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  5. Essential tremor

    August 2016 - Scalpel free surgery for essential tremor is effective and safe. Learn more.

    https://sunnybrook.ca/research/media/item.asp?c=2&i=1454&page=524&f=focused-ultrasound-essential-tremor-safe-effectiveClick through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  6. Uterine fibroids

    January 2016 - Early results of clinical trial leads to recommended use of focused ultrasound as noninvasive option. Learn more.

    Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  7. Brain tumours

    November 2015 - World first blood brain barrier opened non-invasively to deliver chemotherapy. Learn more.

    https://sunnybrook.ca/media/item.asp?i=1351Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  8. Essential tremor 

    In 2012, World First: Sunnybrook researchers conducted the first Canadian trial and only Canadian site in the first international randomized trial for FUS in essential tremor. Four years later scalpel free surgery for essential tremor is determined to be effective and safe.

    Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

  9. Uterine fibroids 

    November 2010 - World first: In partnership withThunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre, Sunnybrook launches a dual site FUS surgery centre testing safety and efficacy of MRI-guided FUS to treat uterine fibroids. In 2016, FUS becomes a recommended, non-invasive treatment for uterine fibroids.

    Click through the dates in the timeline above to view more photos and milestones

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Learn more about focused ultrasound