A Scottish man who is a victim of both multiple sclerosis (MS) and dystonia for close to one and a half decades has received the greatest blessing in the form of a groundbreaking surgery which will enable him live a pain free life.
Sandick Hanson has spent the last 15 years living with both multiple sclerosis (MS) and dystonia, leaving him in almost constant pain.
But he recently underwent a complex surgery known as deep brain stimulation (DBS) to tackle the symptoms of his dystonia, which he says has transformed his life.
His doctors believe he is the first in the world to have the surgery while suffering from both disabling conditions.
Dystonia causes muscle contractions and spasms, making movements difficult and painful.
"Over the years it just became horrendous. My neck was in agony. I could not turn my head to the left," The Scotsman quoted Hanson as saying.
"The pain became more or less 24/7. The only time it was not painful was when I was lying in bed, because my head was being supported by the pillows. But as soon as I rose I was in agony within seconds," he added.
Hanson had tried Botox, relaxants and painkillers - nothing had worked.
"The amazing thing is that on the Monday I was taken in and given the operation, and by the Wednesday the pain had gone. The movement is not 100 per cent, but at least I can turn my head, whereas before I just couldn't. It makes life a lot easier," he exulted.
DBS involves placing electrodes into the Globus Pallidus Interna (GPi) to deliver electrical pulses to block the signals that cause dystonia symptoms. It is linked to a surgically implanted pulse generator, similar to a pacemaker.
It has also been used for other conditions, including Parkinson's disease.