— Not an actual patient/physician

What is Diagnostic Epilepsy Surgery?

If you have epilepsy, at some point, your care team might recommend diagnostic surgery. Learn more here.

Diagnostic epilepsy surgery

For patients with drug-resistant epilepsy, surgical treatment may be an option to help limit, or stop, seizures. Many candidates for diagnostic epilepsy surgery have “focal epilepsy”. This means there’s a specific area of the brain where seizures begin. This area is referred to as the seizure focus, and its location can be different in every patient. 

The first step toward surgical treatment of epilepsy is determining where the seizure focus is. This can be done with intracranial electrical monitoring through several different methods, like strips and grids and Stereo- Electroencephalography (SEEG). Each of these methods has advantages and disadvantages, and only your epilepsy care team can help you make the right choice for your condition.

Once your seizure focus is found, your epilepsy team can determine the best treatment options for you to help limit, or stop, your seizures. Not everyone is a candidate for diagnostic epilepsy surgery. Your epileptologist may recommend that you have another surgery to help treat your epilepsy. 

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Content reviewed for accuracy by Dr. Jiyeoun Yoo, MD, FAES, FACNS