New Laser Treatment Gives Hope To Children With Epilepsy

October 12, 2011

Body

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Approximately 1 in 100 people have an underlying tendency to have recurrent seizures (epilepsy). Drug therapy will only control seizures for 60% of people with epilepsy; the remaining 40% will continue to have seizures no matter what drugs are used. This is called medically intractable or medically refractory epilepsy, and there are at least 800,000 patients in the United States with this condition.

For many of these patients, epilepsy surgery (brain surgery) offers the chance for seizure control and even complete cure of seizures. Depending on the part of the brain

the seizures are coming from, the procedure can be relatively straightforward or very risky and complex. The most challenging epilepsy surgeries involve parts of the brain that are very deep, and you have to cut through normal brain tissue to get to where the seizures are starting. We're always looking for new and better ways to access these deep parts of the brain that are giving rise to seizures. A little over a year ago, we tried a new approach.

The video above tells the story of this major breakthrough in epilepsy surgery through the eyes of one of the first patients in the world to receive it. Breyan and her mother, Lori, shared their story in the hopes that others would learn that surgery for epilepsy is a possible treatment and find out if this life-changing treatment may be right for them.

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