Pediatric Comprehensive Epilepsy Center  

Diagnostic Services and Treatment Approaches

Diagnostic Services

The accurate diagnosis of epilepsy and its location in the brain are critical to ensure that each patient receives the most effective therapy. Our diagnostic tools include: 3T magnetic resonance structural, chemical, and functional imaging (MRI, MRS, fMRI); single-photon emission computer tomography (SPECT); and positron emission tomography (PET). In addition to these neurological imaging studies, we use sophisticated tools to assess brain function, including EEG monitoring, and special "electrophysiologic" mapping techniques to identify the origin and spread of seizures in the brain. We apply the findings of these tests to the planning of surgery in patients with epilepsy that cannot be adequately controlled with medical or dietary therapy.

Treatment of Pediatric Epilepsy

We tailor therapy to each patient's individual needs, taking into account other factors ─ such as lifestyle, stress, sleep habits, and diet ─ that may serve as triggers for seizures. Available treatments include: antiseizure medication; surgery; device implantation (such as vagus nerve stimulation); dietary therapy (such as modified ketogenic diet, low glycemic index diet, and high-protein diet) and vitamins.

For patients with other illnesses or disorders, such as migraines or depression, we try whenever possible to streamline therapy, using one medication to treat both conditions. We also work with patients and their families to identify potential barriers to therapy in an effort to make treatment easier for them to follow.

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