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Pediatric Epilepsy Surgery
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Finding the Most Minimally Invasive Solutions for Your Child
Our team of epilepsy surgeons focuses on minimally invasive epilepsy surgery, which limits approach-related surgical trauma and has been shown to improve postoperative results.
Epilepsy surgery at Children’s National Hospital is an integral part of the Comprehensive Pediatric Epilepsy Program. This program is one of the largest multidisciplinary epilepsy programs in the country and members of this team are involved in up to 8,000 epilepsy-related patient visits each year.
Every child who may be eligible for surgery is evaluated by our team, which includes:
- Neurologists specializing in epilepsy and neurophysiology
- Pediatric epilepsy neurosurgeons
- Child psychiatrists
- Social workers with special interest in epilepsy
Choosing Children’s National for Epilepsy Surgery
Surgical treatment of epilepsy is usually the solution when a child has seizures that cannot be controlled by standard therapy with medications (and sometimes special diets such as the ketogenic diet). For an estimated 10 percent of children with epilepsy, surgery may be their best chance to live seizure-free. Learn more about our treatment methods for epilepsy surgery.
The National Association of Epilepsy Centers (NAEC) has ranked Children’s National as a Level 4 epilepsy center. Children’s National completed the NAEC accreditation process to receive Level 4 ranking, the highest level given to a location that can handle the most complex monitoring and specialized treatment, surgical options and care for patients.
At Children’s National, highlights of our epilepsy surgery program include:
Each year the team performs over 40 operations for children with epilepsy and is known for its excellent surgical outcomes in complex epilepsy surgery procedures.
Our epilepsy surgery program uses the following cutting-edge equipment and technologies:
- Clinical 3T MRI
- Intraoperative MRI scanner (1.5T)
- Neuronavigation – BrainLAB Suite / Stealth
- Multimodal integration structural and functional imaging
- ROSA neurosurgical robot
- ClearPoint real-time intraoperative MRI Interventions technology
- Framed Stereotaxy using the Leksell Stereotactic frame
- Intraoperative ultrasound
- Visualase / Thermal laser ablation
- Intraoperative electrophysiology
- Brain mapping and monitoring
We are the first hospital in the Washington, D.C., region to evolve minimally invasive approaches to pediatric epilepsy surgery such as robot-assisted stereoencephalography (SEEG) and laser-based ablation (or destruction) of areas of the brain causing seizures. Consequently, we have the most experience in this type of pediatric epilepsy surgery.
The Visualase MRI-Guided Laser Ablation Program involves accurate, minimally invasive treatment of epilepsy using laser thermal energy applied to destroy an epileptic lesion while guided by real time MRI-monitoring. Sterereotactic Electroencephalography (SEEG) allows for determining a seizure focus by placement of minimally invasive depth electrodes through minimal access 2.5 mm twist drill holes in the skull using a neurosurgical robot, thus obviating the need for the large brain surgeries.
For more information about our Epilepsy Surgery Program or to schedule an appointment with one of our providers, please call 202-476-2265.