We report our experience of unilateral subthalamotomy in patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Eleven patients were included in a pilot, open-labeled study to assess the effect of unilateral lesion of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) with a minimum of 12 months of follow-up. The guidelines of CAPIT (Core Assessment Program for Intracerebral Transplantation) were followed for recruitment into the study and follow-up assessment. Levodopa equivalents daily intake (mean 967 mg) were unchanged during the first 12 months in all but one patient who stopped medication. The sensorimotor region of the STN was defined by semimicrorecording and stimulation and a thermolytic lesion was placed accordingly. There was a significant reduction in both UPDRS parts II and III in the "off" state at 1-, 6-, and 12-month follow-up. This effect was maintained in four patients up to 24 months. The dyskinesia score did not change postoperatively. Lesion-induced dyskinesias were not a management problem except in one patient who developed a large infarction several days postsurgery. This initial study indicates that a lesion of the STN is not generally associated with hemiballismus in PD. Subthalamotomy may induce considerable motor benefit and could become another surgical option under specific circumstances.