Jersey Shore University Medical Center Adds Advanced Technology to Detect Movement Disorders   

Jersey Shore University Medical Center Adds Advanced Technology to Detect Movement Disorders

Photo of CT Scanner and Nuclear Medicine Techs
From left, Certified Nuclear Medicine Technologist (CNMT) Andrei Zamora and Jason Guess, CNMT, prepare the CT Scanner with the DaTscan camera for a patient’s imaging in Jersey Shore University Medical Center’s HOPE Tower.

Hackensack Meridian Jersey Shore University Medical Center Neuroscience Institute recently added a new, state-of-the-art diagnostic imaging system to its Nuclear Medicine program. GE Healthcare’s DaTscantm camera is one of the most advanced diagnostic imaging technologies available, utilizing single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) to visualize dopamine transporter levels in the brain. It enables clinicians to view the brain with exceptional clarity while using a low dose of radiation.

“In Parkinson’s Disease, there is a steady loss of dopamine transporters in the brain. Dopamine transporters (DaT) mediate the flow of the neurotransmitter dopamine between nerve cells,” said Alan Colicchio, M.D., chair of Neurology, Jersey Shore University Medical Center and medical director, Neuroscience Care Transformation Service, Hackensack Meridian Health, Southern Market. “The loss of DaT disrupts the communication between nerve cells and the transport of information from the brain to the muscles causing the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease.”

“DaTscan enables us to understand dopamine metabolism deep in the brain, which may help to diagnose certain neurologic diseases,” said Shabbar F. Danish, M.D., FAANS, chair of Neurosurgery, Jersey Shore University Medical Center. “It’s a great tool for our clinicians and a gamechanger for the care of our patients.”

Dr. Danish leads the Surgical Movement Disorder Program at the academic medical center. Movement disorders refer to a group of neurological conditions that cause abnormal, increased or reduced body movements that are typically involuntary. Three of the major disorders are Parkinson’s Disease, Essential Tremors, and Dystonia. The program’s multidisciplinary team of experts, including neurologists, nurse practitioners, neuropsychologists, and neuro rehabilitation specialists provide an array of medical and surgical treatments to specifically address and manage movement disorders. They include complex medical management, Botulinum Treatment, deep brain stimulation (DBS), MRI-guided laser therapy, physical, occupational and speech therapy and nutrition counseling.

“This is a great example of how we arm all our clinical specialists with the tools and resources they need to provide our patients with the best care and treatments,” said Vito Buccellato, MPA, LNHA, president and chief hospital executive, Jersey Shore University Medical Center.

The Neuroscience Institute provides patients with a comprehensive lineup of services for spine injuries, concussion, epilepsy, MS, ALS, brain tumors, memory, and more, as well as the region’s only Stroke Rescue Center. Jersey Shore University Medical Center was recognized by Healthgrades as one of America’s 100 Best Hospitals for Stroke Care and with Neuroscience Excellence Awards in 2020, 2021 and 2022 as well as the new Cranial Neurosurgery Excellence Award in 2022.

“We continue to expand our Neuroscience Institute with new patient services, advanced technology and highly specialized clinicians, as well as finalize construction of a new centralized and exceedingly patient-accessible location at Jersey Shore for many of our neuroscience services,” said Kenneth N. Sable, M.D., MBA, FACEP, regional president, Southern Market, Hackensack Meridian Health.

To make an appointment with the Movement Disorders Program specialists in Jersey Shore University Medical Center’s HOPE Tower, 19 Davis Ave., Neptune, NJ, call 732-974-0003. For more information, visit
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