Epilepsy

EMU Team

Epilepsy affects nearly 1 out of 100 people and impacts countless others, including family members, caregivers, and friends. Epilepsy is defined as a condition of recurrent unprovoked seizures. Seizures may occur for many reasons, including brain injury, birth defects, tumors, trauma, genetics, or unknown causes.

Epilepsy can have an adverse effect on the independence, as well as the physical and emotional well-being, of the person suffering from this condition. Fortunately, there are many treatment options available to reduce or eliminate seizures and improve the quality of life for people with epilepsy.

Refractory epilepsy occurs when seizures persist despite adequate trials of at least 3 antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). This occurs in about 35% of patients, and those patients will continue to have sometimes debilitating seizures despite pharmacological treatment. It has been reported that some patients may suffer from refractory seizures for about 20 years before being referred for a non-pharmacologic intervention. As such, it is important that every patient with refractory epilepsy be referred to a Level IV Comprehensive Epilepsy Program to evaluate and manage the seizures and epilepsy.

Comprehensive Epilepsy Program

NAEC logoOur Comprehensive Epilepsy Program offers a broad range of evaluation services and sophisticated therapies for children and adults suffering from seizures.  Our state-of-the-art 12-bed James H. Cummings Foundation Epilepsy Monitoring Center is housed at John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital and is the only center of its kind in Western New York.  Our program serves both children and adults and has been recognized as a Level IV Center by the National Association of Epilepsy Centers (NAEC) for the last 8 years consecutively. 

From the initial evaluation to follow-up care, we promote the overall well-being of our patients and help them understand and live well with their condition. Our dedicated and highly-specialized team is comprised of adult and pediatric epileptologists, neurosurgeons, nurses and nurse practitioners, neuro-psychologists, experts in imaging, skilled technicians, a specialized dietician, as well as a clinical research program.

Our mission is to improve the quality of life for people with epilepsy through compassionate care and specialized medical treatment. We accomplish this through comprehensive evaluation and diagnosis, individualized treatment plans, patient and family education, research initiatives and follow-up care.

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