1358.1 - Vagus Nerve Stimulation Therapy (resubmission)

Page last updated: 05 November 2021

Application Detail



Description of Medical Service

Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS® Therapy) Therapy is an adjunctive non-pharmacologic treatment for patients with drug-resistant partial or generalised epilepsy which can improve seizure control and quality-of-life for patients with epilepsy.

VNS® Therapy involves insertion of a small pulse generator (similar to a pacemaker) under the skin in the left chest wall and a lead attached to the left vagus nerve in the neck, to deliver precisely timed and measured electrical stimulation to the left vagus nerve. Using an external programming system (hand-held computer, software and wand), neurologists can adjust the timing and amount of stimulation the patient receives.

VNS® Therapy results in a decrease in both the rate and severity of seizures for patients where no other therapy is available.

Description of Medical Condition

Epilepsy is a disorder characterised by unprovoked recurrent seizures, a neurological state in which a region (focus) of the brain or the entire brain develops abnormal, hypersynchronous neuronal discharges. Seizures are classified as either generalised (whole brain involved from onset) or partial (regional or focal seizure onset). For the majority of patients, seizures are adequately controlled with Anti-Epileptic Drugs (AEDs). Approximately 30% of epilepsy patients do not respond to medical treatment and are termed “refractory” despite treatment with a combination of AEDs.

Reason for Application

New MBS item

Medical Service Type


Previous Application Number


Associated Documentation

Application Form


PICO Confirmation

As per Application 1358

Assessment Report


Public Summary Document

Public Summary Document (PDF 776 KB)
Public Summary Document (Word 424 KB)

Consumer Friendly Public Summary Document (PSD)

Consumer Friendly PSD (PDF 296 KB)
Consumer Friendly PSD (Word 18 KB)

Consumer Friendly PSDs - The Basics

The Basics (PDF 190 KB)
The Basics (Word 29 KB)

Meetings for this Application




6 - 7 October 2016


24 - 25 November 2016