For 10 years, Robbie's Tourette's syndrome was so violent that he was constantly at risk of hurting himself. His mother said he would contort his body in ways she never thought possible. When Robbie was 16, he took part in an experimental procedure that put a device in his brain that would emit electric impulses to help control his tremors.
The surgery took 12 and a half hours to complete, and is extremely rare. Robbie's doctor said that when it was done, less than 100 others worldwide had undergone the treatment.
It seems to have been worth the risk: Three years later, he's only had a few tics.
After coming off his medication, Robbie also lost 120 lbs. He is currently a sophomore at Pratt Institute studying film and has a 4.0 average. Thanks to the surgery, he's finally in control of his body and his life.
Robbie is able to control the device in his brain and can turn up the device to emit more electronic impulses if he feels symptoms coming.
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