Epilepsy treatment and care in South Denver

Experts estimate epilepsy affects one in 26 people. Causes range from head injuries and brain tumors to genetic illnesses, toxicities and other medical problems. In Colorado, Swedish Medical Center offers the most comprehensive diagnosis and treatment capabilities for seizure disorders. Equipped with state-of-the-art diagnostic tools, specialized care units and a top-tier team of dedicated medical professionals, Swedish delivers the comprehensive care every patient with a seizure disorder needs and deserves.

The nationally recognized level 4 epilepsy center at Swedish is now offering MRI-guided thermal imaging and laser technology, a significantly less invasive surgical option for epilepsy patients.

Seizures and symptoms of epilepsy

Epilepsy, also known as a seizure disorder, is a common chronic neurological disorder in which cell activity in the brain becomes interrupted, causing unpredictable, recurring seizures, periods of odd behavior or, at times, a loss of consciousness. Epilepsy affects people of all ages and, while proper treatment can help, is an uncurable condition (although children may outgrow the disorder as they age). While some seizures may not seem very concerning, even mild seizures need to be treated since they could be dangerous if they occur during activities such as driving, swimming, running or holding a child.

Specialized treatment and epilepsy care

In the metro Denver area and throughout Colorado, Swedish Medical Center offers the most comprehensive diagnosis and treatment capabilities for seizure disorders such as epilepsy.

Swedish maintains an experienced team of multidisciplinary medical professionals who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of seizure disorders, including:

  • Epileptologists,
  • Neurodiagnostic specialists
  • Neurosurgeons
  • Anesthesiologists
  • Nurse care coordinator
  • Rehabilitation specialists

Working together, this team is able to deliver precise and comprehensive care to patients from diagnosis through treatment.

Comprehensive treatment for epilepsy

Swedish uses a combination of medication and surgical procedures to provide targeted, comprehensive treatment options for epilepsy patients. Neurosurgery options include lobectomies, hemispherectomies, corpus callosotomies, vagal nerve stimulator (VNS) implantation, awake craniotomy, functional mapping, frameless stereotaxy, responsive neurostimulation (RNS) and deep brain stimulation (DBS).

State-of-the-art technology for epilepsy treatment

Swedish integrates leading-edge technology and equipment into every phase of care for patients. These advanced resources include:

  • Pre-surgical Evaluation/Diagnostic Testing: EEG, MRI, fMRI, PET, SPECT, Neuropsychological Evaluation, Wada Testing, Intracranial Electrode Evaluation, and Electrical Brain Mapping.
  • Long-Term Epilepsy Monitoring Unit: Complete with fully furnished, private hospital suites, these rooms are equipped with the latest EEG video capabilities to provide both scalp and intracranial monitoring.
  • Ambulatory EEG Monitoring: This service allows adult patients to be monitored in the comfort of their own home. This may increase the likelihood of capturing patients’ events because they are recorded in their routine environment. Recorded data is analyzed by on-site epileptologists to establish a baseline of epilepsy activity, which can then be used to justify inpatient intensive screening to third-party insurance companies.
  • Real-Time Guided Thermal Imaging and Laser Technology: This new surgical approach offers a safer and significantly less invasive alternative to craniotomy, currently the most commonly used surgery for epilepsy. The MRI-guided laser probe creates a smaller corridor in the brain, reducing damage to surrounding brain tissue. As a result, patients have shorter hospital stays and fewer complications. The MRI-guided laser probe is inserted through a hole in the skull that is only 3.2 millimeters wide (about the diameter of a pen) versus the much larger bony opening required for a craniotomy. The skin is closed with a single absorbable stitch. Because it is a less invasive procedure than a craniotomy, the patient recovery time tends to be quicker.
Learn more about the neuroscience center at Swedish Medical Center.