Care for you, support for your family
Recognizing the lifelong struggles that people with epilepsy face, NewYork-Presbyterian's epilepsy teams use innovative therapies to help you gain control of your seizures so you can have a better quality of life. Education and support are available for you and your loved ones.
Understanding your seizures
We use the most advanced electrodiagnostic testing to evaluate your brain function and seizures, including:
- Electroencephalography (EEG or "brain wave test"), an examination of spontaneous brain activity. At NewYork-Presbyterian, we offer outpatient 24-hour EEG testing, enabling you to move around and go about your day while the testing is being performed.
- Video-EEG monitoring to diagnose complex seizure disorders while you stay in the hospital for four to five days in one of our epilepsy monitoring units.
- Intracranial monitoring, the placement of electrodes on your brain. This is useful if your doctor decides you may benefit from epilepsy surgery, but it is not clear exactly where in the brain your seizures are coming from.
The latest epilepsy treatments
Your customized epilepsy treatment plan may include:
Our team will try a variety of antiseizure medications to find the one that works best for you. You may also be eligible to participate in a clinical trial of a new epilepsy treatment. Our researchers played a significant role in the development and evaluation of most of the new antiseizure medications available today.
We offer nutritional guidance for epilepsy, such as how to follow a high-fat ketogenic diet, a low glycemic index diet, or a modified Atkins diet.
Since many types of epilepsy arise from small areas of the brain, it is possible for neurosurgeons to identify and remove these areas to cure epilepsy. We identify these areas using non-invasive imaging or invasive methods such as subdural grid placement. If the areas involved in producing seizures are deeper than what can be detected on a grid, our neurosurgeons can place depth electrodes to better identify the abnormal areas. If we cannot identify specific areas, we can “disconnect” large areas of the brain that are producing seizures.
Minimally invasive surgery
For patients with seizure sites that may be difficult to access using traditional surgery, we offer minimally invasive techniques such as laser interstitial thermal therapy and stereotactic radiosurgery— allowing our neurosurgeon to attempt to eliminate the seizure site without making a large opening in the skull.
For seizures that cannot be treated with surgery, radiation, or laser ablation, we offer neuromodulation for some patients. We implant a small pacemaker-like device to stimulate the nervous system and reduce the frequency and severity of seizures. There are two types of neuromodulation devices we implant including a vagus nerve stimulator, which is implanted under the skin in the chest, and a responsive neurostimulator, which is implanted in the skull and directly stimulates the brain if abnormal electrical activity occurs.