Children's Epilepsy

Children's Epilepsy

Epilepsy, also known as seizure disorder, is a common disease of the brain affecting about 1 percent of the population, including children and adults. It can affect any person at any age. There are approximately 30,000 patients in Mississippi with epilepsy. Recognized as the state’s only level 4 epilepsy center accredited by the National Association of Epilepsy Centers, UMMC and Children's of Mississippi provide comprehensive testing and treatment for patients of all ages at University Comprehensive Epilepsy Center.

A full complement of advanced diagnostic tests is available for seizures diagnosis, classification, and evaluation for surgical treatment of epilepsy. The center's inpatient epilepsy monitoring unit combines video and EEG monitoring of patients to determine epilepsy type, number and location of seizures. Results of the monitoring tests are supplemented by other diagnostic procedures, including MRI, SPECT, neuropsychological tests, Wada test and PET scanning. Surgical treatments included temporal lobe resection, extratemporal cortical resection, hemispherictomies, corpus callosal resection and deep brain stimulation as well as VNS.

Patients benefit from the intervention of an experienced multidisciplinary team that includes neurologists, neurosurgeons, neurophysiologist, neuroradiologists, EEG technologists, clinical nurse specialists, neuropsychologists and psychiatrists. Any patient who is not responding to medical therapy is appropriate for referral to University Comprehensive Epilepsy Center. Patients may be referred by a physician or self-referred.

Clinical facilities

  • Pediatric epilepsy monitoring unit beds for long- or short-term continuous closed-circuit television/electroencephalographic (CCTV/EEG) recording
  • Pediatric outpatient ambulatory care facilities
  • Pediatric EEG laboratories
  • PET scanning facilities
  • Anatomic and functional MRI facilities
  • SPECT scanning facilities (for ictal and interictal studies)
  • Neuropsychology

Clinical services

The professional staff of University Comprehensive Epilepsy Center includes neurologists, pediatric neurologists, neurosurgeons, pediatric neurosurgeons, neuropsychologists, psychiatrists, nurse practitioners, social workers, and EEG technologists - all of whom have special expertise in epilepsy. The staff work with community physicians, other hospitals and community agencies (Epilepsy Foundation in Jackson) to optimize treatment and provide appropriate services for patients with uncontrolled seizures or special problems related to epilepsy.

The facilities at University Comprehensive Epilepsy Center and expertise of the staff allow the staff to:

  • Establish a definitive diagnosis in patients with paroxysmal symptoms of uncertain cause;
  • Establish optimal medication regimens to maximize seizure control and minimize side-effects;
  • Identify patients with medication-resistant seizures for surgical treatment alternatives;
  • Localize epileptic brain regions for resective surgery, map vital or eloquent brain areas in relation to the epileptogenic area;
  • Perform epilepsy surgery;
  • VNS for non-resective surgery;
  • Conduct detailed neuropsychological evaluations;
  • Monitor antiepileptic drugs and their metabolites in relation to seizures, cognitive function, other drugs, and environmental or physiological factors that affect antiepileptic drug disposition;
  • Conduct clinical trials of investigational new drugs;
  • Diagnose and treat psychogenic seizures;
  • Offer a range of rehabilitation, psychosocial services and referrals.

In addition, the center conducts ongoing clinical research programs in epilepsy as well as new diagnostic methods and treatments

Epilepsy wellness

  • Children with epilepsy are seen in a special clinical setting at Batson Children's Hospital..
  • Epilepsy Foundation Mississippi sponsors a monthly support group meeting for Rankin, Hinds and Madison counties. Call (601) 936-5222 for more information.