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Epilepsy Treatments and Services

It is estimated that more than 65 million* people worldwide suffer with epilepsy. In the United States alone, 1 in 26 people are likely to develop epilepsy at some point in their lifetime*. A majority of those affected are managed successfully with a drug regimen. However, for patients with special issues, or those who have tried at least two different drug treatments without success, we can offer help.

The ColumbiaDoctors Neurology/Comprehensive Epilepsy Center is comprised of adult and pediatric epileptologists from our Divisions of Epilepsy and Sleep and Child Neurology, along with an integrated team of other epilepsy specialists and trained healthcare professionals. We are dedicated to the evaluation and care of adults, adolescents, and children with epilepsy with the goal of helping patients gain control of seizures and optimize their quality of life. We have particular expertise in serving patients with particularly complicated issues, such as:

  • Difficult to control seizures
  • Diagnostic uncertainty
  • Children and adolescents with epilepsy
  • Pregnancy and women’s health
  • Mood, memory, or sleep disorders

Individuals may be referred to the Columbia Comprehensive Epilepsy Center by their primary care physician, a referring neurologist, or by self-referral.

Team Approach

Our team consists of:

  • Adult and pediatric epileptologists (specially-trained neurologists),
  • Neurosurgeons,
  • Neuroradiologists,
  • Electroencephalography (EEG) technicians,
  • Nurse practitioners,
  • Neuropsychologists and Psychiatrists

Diagnostic Expertise

We offer a full complement of advanced diagnostic testing, including evaluation for surgical treatment of epilepsy, as warranted. Approximately half of patients not controlled by medications are candidates for epilepsy surgery that could cure their seizures. The Center's inpatient adult and pediatric Epilepsy Monitoring Units (EMUs) combine video and electroencephalography (EEG) monitoring of patients to determine epilepsy type, frequency, and location of seizure onset in the brain. Monitoring results are often supplemented by other diagnostic procedures, including MRI, SPECT, and PET brain imaging, and Wada and neuropsychological testing.

*Facts courtesy of the Epilepsy Foundation, our patient advocacy partner.