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Epilepsy Center
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The Epilepsy Center at UCSF Medical Center provides a comprehensive program from diagnosis to treatments, including medication, brain surgery, vagal nerve stimulation and experimental therapies involving drugs, devices and surgery. Our team includes neurologists who specialize in treating epilepsy as well as neurosurgeons, neuropsychologists, neuroradiologists, a nutritionist, nurses and a pharmacist, all specially trained to treat this condition.

Our expertise and our full range of services — including the treatment of children at the Pediatric Epilepsy Center — have earned us a level four rating — the highest level — from the National Association of Epilepsy Centers.

Patients have the opportunity to participate in studies, called clinical trials, to test the latest experimental drugs, therapies and surgical procedures.

Our patients receive tailored treatment plans including medications, lifestyle modification and dietary changes, developed to fit patient preferences and values. Education and support programs are key components of therapy.

For patients who don't respond to medication, evaluations are performed to determine if they're candidates for surgery. The evaluation includes a 24-hour video electroencephalography (EEG).

Other diagnostic tools include high-field MR imaging, MEG and Wada tests to precisely locate the areas of the brain where seizures originate and areas of the brain that may be at risk during surgery.

Surgical treatments include:

  • Focal resections — These procedures involve the removal of a small area of the brain where seizures originate. New brain monitoring techniques allow doctors to better pinpoint brain tissue causing seizures.
  • Visualase thermal laser ablation — In this procedure, a laser fiber is used to destroy the small, well-defined area of abnormal brain tissue, leaving the surrounding tissue unharmed.
  • Reactive neural stimulation — This implantable device detects abnormal electrical activity in the brain and delivers imperceptible levels of electrical stimulation to normalize brain activity before a seizure begins.
  • Disconnection procedures — These procedures disrupt abnormal electrical activity that occurs in the brain and triggers epileptic seizures.
  • Vagal nerve stimulation — This procedure involves minor surgery and is a relatively new treatment that helps prevent or lessen the severity of seizures.

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Getting Here

Epilepsy Center
400 Parnassus Ave., Eighth Floor
San Francisco, CA 94143
Phone: (415) 353-2437
Fax: (415) 353-2837

Hours: Monday to Friday
8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Access Your Health Information Online

This clinic uses UCSF MyChart, an online patient service. Message your provider, request medication refills, view some test results and more.

Learn more about UCSF MyChart

Patient Stories

First Appointment

To schedule your first appointment at the UCSF Epilepsy Center, please fax the following information to (415) 353-2837:

  • A referral letter, including your current diagnosis, from your primary care doctor or specialist.
  • All related doctor's notes and lab and test results. Please do not send original films or CDs.
  • Copy of insurance card (front and back). The center accepts most health insurance plans. Some insurance plans won't cover the full amount and you will be responsible for the remainder. Call your insurance representative to confirm eligibility, benefits and co-pay and deductible amounts.
  • Copy of authorization from insurance, if required.
  • Your contact information.

You also may call the Epilepsy Center at (415) 353-2437 to speak with an appointment scheduler.


Parking at Parnassus

Public parking for an hourly fee at UCSF Medical Center is available in the seven-level Millberry Union Garage at 500 Parnassus Ave. There are two garage entrances — one on the north side of Parnassus Avenue and another on Irving Street, just east of Third Avenue.

Another garage with an hourly fee, at 350 Parnassus Ave., is open Monday to Friday from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Metered street parking is rarely available.

Patients being admitted to the hospital may be dropped off at the circular driveway leading to the main entrance at 505 Parnassus Ave. This area also may be used to pick up patients who are being discharged.

For more information about parking at Parnassus, call Campus Parking Services at 476-2566.

Valet Parking Service

Valet parking service is available at the Ambulatory Care Center (ACC) at 400 Parnassus Ave. from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The valet service is free but patients must pay regular parking fees. For more information about the valet service, call (415) 476-6200.

A UCSF "greeter" also is available at the ACC from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist patients find their way.

Public Transportation


UCSF Medical Center is accessible via Muni streetcar line N-Judah*, which stops at Second Avenue and Irving Street, and the following Muni bus lines, which stop in front of the hospital:

  • 43-Masonic*
  • 6-Parnassus

For more information about Muni visit,

* Wheelchair accessible bus routes

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Clinic Team

Kurtis Auguste
Dr. Kurtis Auguste,
pediatric neurosurgeon
Deborah A. Cahn-Weiner
Deborah A. Cahn-Weiner,
Edward Chang
Dr. Edward Chang,
Susannah Cornes
Dr. Susannah Cornes,
Paul Garcia
Dr. Paul Garcia,
Neurologist and epilepsy specialist
Manu Hegde
Dr. Manu Hegde,
Robert Knowlton
Dr. Robert Knowlton,
Maritza Lopez
Kendall Nash
Dr. Kendall Nash,
pediatric neurologist
Brianna Paul
Brianna Paul,
Sam Pleasure
Dr. Sam Pleasure,
neurologist and epilepsy specialist
Tina Shih
Dr. Tina Shih,
neurologist and epilepsy specialist
Mariann Ward
Mariann Ward,
nurse practitioner