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Our approach

The Comprehensive Epilepsy Center of the Northwell Health Institute for Neurology and Neurosurgery offers a variety of leading-edge medical and surgical treatment options to control and prevent focal seizures. We use minimally invasive techniques whenever possible to offer reduced hospital stay and discomfort following surgery, while still providing an effective treatment for controlling seizures when medications have not succeeded. Our multidisciplinary team performs between 50 and 100 epilepsy surgeries each year, and 90 percent of patients are either seizure-free or have reduced seizures one year after surgery.

Complications

Surgery should only be considered if anti-seizure medications have not been effective at controlling seizures. As with any surgery, there are general risks with procedures to control focal seizures. These include:

  • Blood clots
  • Blood loss
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Reaction to medication

Recovery

Recovery depends on the type of treatment used. Following surgery, you will typically stay in the hospital for several days. Most patients are able to return to normal activities within six to eight weeks. Although the surgery should help minimize your seizures, you will continue to take anti-seizure medication as prescribed by your doctor

Possible side effects

Medication to control focal seizures is often highly effective. However, there are often side effects which include:

  • Nausea
  • Decreased appetite
  • Dizziness
  • Insomnia

There are also side effects that may occur after the surgical procedures, including:

  • Scalp numbness
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Headaches
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Loss of memory
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