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Cutting-edge Care Offers Teddy Independence and a Brighter Future

By Christina, a Children’s National parent
Christina and Teddy_resized

My son Teddy is 19. He loves hanging out with friends, going bowling and learning everything about cars. But Teddy hasn’t always felt so free. He was diagnosed with epilepsy six years ago. Before his diagnosis, he had severe seizures so frequently that he couldn’t attend school in person — he had to do it online. He couldn’t go friends’ houses. We struggled to manage five daily medications. I was afraid to leave him home alone.

We met with Children’s National Hospital neurosurgeon Dr. Chima Oluigbo and he suggested a procedure using Surgical Theater Precision Virtual Reality. Dr. Oluigbo explained how he could use this state-of-the-art technology to perform minimally invasive surgery that could eliminate Teddy’s seizures. Dr. Oluigbo was able to show us 360-degree images of Teddy’s brain and his exact surgical plan through a virtual reality headset I wore. This brought our family comfort and hope, knowing the surgery could change Teddy’s life.

It did. Teddy had surgery in May 2020. He has been seizure-free ever since and needs only one medication. His biggest dream was to get his driver’s license and in fall 2021, his dream came true. We are so grateful to Dr. Oluigbo, Dr. William Gaillard — director of the epilepsy program who also cared for Teddy — and my son’s entire care team at Children’s National who gave Teddy his life back.