John W. Engstrom, M.D., clinical chief of service in the Department of Neurology, discusses subspecialty developments, including the Pediatric Epilepsy Center and hospitalist program for inpatients with diseases of the nervous system.
Under the direction of Joseph Sullivan, M.D., the new center offers high-quality imaging, psychological evaluations, pharmaceutical treatments and surgery.
UCSF's new, state-of-the-art, whole-head magnetoencephalography (MEG) machine surpasses more traditional forms of brain imaging to pinpoint the source of seizure activity in the brain more precisely, and to map out functional areas that are important to avoid during surgery.
LP, a 15-year-old high school athlete, experienced partial onset seizures that began with vertigo followed by leftward eye deviation, head turn to the left and left hand shaking, with some retained consciousness. An MEG examination and surgery, followed by postoperative monitoring by video EEG telemetry, led to a tapering of her medication, regained concentration and a significant rise in her grade-point average. She now has a driver's license, plays varsity soccer, and has begun rock and ice climbing.
Joseph Sullivan, M.D., who became director of the UCSF Pediatric Epilepsy Center in 2007, is profiled in this issue. Before joining the UCSF faculty, Sullivan spent two years at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, where he specialized in evaluating and treating children with refractory epilepsy that won't respond to medications. His primary area of research is in the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging to identify areas in the brain that control language in children with epilepsy.
The newly acquired Leksell Gamma Knife Perfexion is now fully operational in the Gamma Knife Radiosurgery Program at UCSF Medical Center. In addition to shortening the time for procedures and eliminating uncomfortable positions for patients, the enhanced equipment allows physicians to treat a wider range of sites, including the brain, head and neck.
See information on upcoming continuing medical education courses.
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