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Neuroscience Institute

Epilepsy Center

Services & Treatments

Whether you've suffered one or multiple seizures, one thing is for certain: You want the best chance to avoid further seizures. The expert neurologists in the Epilepsy Center understand and are here to help. 

Diagnosis

Proper treatment starts with a careful assessment of the person’s seizures so we can develop an individualized medical treatment plan. During your first visit, we discuss your seizure(s) and perform a thorough physical and neurological examination. If you have not already been diagnosed with epilepsy or another seizure disorder, we will order diagnostic tests.

Diagnostic testing may include:

  • Blood tests - a blood sample may be taken to check for signs of infections, genetic conditions or other conditions that may be associated with seizures.
  • Neuroimaging:
    • Computerized tomography (CT) scan – uses X-rays to obtain cross-sectional images of your brain. CT scans can reveal abnormalities in your brain that might be causing your seizures, such as tumors, bleeding and cysts.
    • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – uses powerful magnets and radio waves to create a detailed view of your brain, which can help detect lesions or abnormalities in your brain that could be causing your seizures.
    • Positron Emission Tomography (PET) – use a small amount of low-dose radioactive material that's injected into a vein to help visualize active areas of the brain and detect abnormalities.
  • Single-Photon Emission Computerized Tomography (SPECT) – a test that measures blood flow in the brain and how this flow changes with seizure activity.
  • Magnetoencephalography (MEG) – measures the magnetic fields produced by brain activity to identify potential areas of seizure onset.
  • Electroencephalogram (EEG) – a test that detects abnormalities in your brain waves, or in the electrical activity of your brain. During the procedure, electrodes are attached to your scalp with a paste-like substance or cap and record the electrical activity of your brain.
  • Neuropsychological, speech and hearing evaluations – tests in which your doctors assess your thinking, memory and speech skills. The test results help doctors determine which areas of your brain are affected.

Treatments

Treatment options at the Rochester Regional Health Epilepsy Center aim to eliminate seizures or reduce the frequency and intensity of seizures in children and adults and may include: 

  • Medication - Most people with epilepsy can become seizure-free by taking one anti-seizure medication, which is also called anti-epileptic medication. Others may be able to decrease the frequency and intensity of their seizures by taking a combination of medications. Our doctors will work with you to find the most appropriate
    anti-seizure medication for your symptoms, and calculate and adjust the dose to help bring your seizures under control.
  • Therapies:
    • Ketogenic Diet – a special high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet that helps control seizures in some people with epilepsy.
    • Vagus nerve stimulation – a treatment that involves implanting a pacemaker that sends small electrical pulses via wires to the brain.
    • Experimental therapies – clinical trials offering access to promising new therapies (participation is voluntary).

If you've only had one seizure, and your tests don't raise any concerns, we may decide the best option is to simply monitor your condition.

Follow-up is very important for seizure management. You should continue seeing our program and/or your local doctor to ensure your seizures are under control and to watch for the emergence of certain symptoms.

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Schedule a Consultation

If you're struggling with epilepsy or seizures, you'll benefit from a comprehensive evaluation and a unique treatment plan that gives you the best chance to avoid further seizures. And you'll experience the intimate, compassionate care that only Rochester Regional Health delivers.
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