Epilepsy is a condition where irregular nerve cell activity in the brain causes seizures. Brain cells give commands to the body by sending electrical pulses or signals. Epilepsy disrupts that electrical activity, causing abnormal behavior in the body, such as unusual muscle behaviors and sensations (seizures) and even loss of consciousness. Epilepsy can affect a person’s ability to walk, drive, and perform other daily tasks. The seizures often can be controlled with medication, or with surgery in more serious cases. Children diagnosed with epilepsy may outgrow it.

UAB Medicine is home to some of the nation’s most experienced epilepsy specialists, with expertise in all types of epilepsy. Our neurologists and neurosurgeons work together to develop care plans that are personalized to each patient. Our history of innovative patient care in diagnosing, treating, and managing this condition helped the UAB Epilepsy Center achieve a Level IV Center designation – the highest available – from the National Association of Epilepsy Centers.

The UAB Epilepsy Center uses advanced imaging technology to evaluate patients. UAB Medicine is the only medical center in Birmingham that offers such a wide range of technology, including:

  • Magnetoencephalopathy (MEG)-based magnetic source imaging
  • High-resolution magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • Combined EEG and functional MRI
  • Single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT)
  • Positron emission tomography (PET) scanning

For people who are born with epilepsy or develop it in their youth, the process of moving to adult care can be challenging. Our Epilepsy Transition Clinic works closely with the UAB STEP Program to make that process easier and help patients who have multiple chronic conditions. This team is comprised of pediatric and adult neurologists who are board-certified in epilepsy, as well as social workers, a mental health liaison, and a transition coordinator. The transition program includes regularly scheduled clinic visits and assistance in preparing pediatric patients for adult care.

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