Epilepsy Treatment in Israel
Epilepsy is a spectrum of brain disorders which cause the development of abnormal activity of convulsions. Herzliya Medical Center Private Hospital conducts progressive minimally invasive techniques for the treatment of epilepsy.
What Is Epilepsy
Epilepsy is a disease of the central nervous system, characterized by a violation of the physiological activity of the brain cells. The main manifestation of epilepsy are seizures; the severity, frequency and nature of the disease can vary significantly.
Focal seizures are caused by abnormal activity at one part of the brain. The seizures appear in the form of sensory disorders, a brief loss of consciousness or involuntary contractions of the muscles of the upper or lower limbs. The seizures develop in response to pathological activity of the brain and may be accompanied by falling, twitching muscles and involuntary urination. Brain surgery for epilepsy is done to people to reduce or to stop the number of seizures they have. Surgery for epilepsy involves removing the part of the brain which causes the seizures or separating the part of the brain which causes seizures from the rest of the brain.
A single convulsive seizure is not regarded as a sign of epilepsy. An indication for an in-depth diagnosis is a history of two or more seizures not caused by any objective reasons.
- Neurological examination
- Electroencephalography (EEG). EEG is a graphical recording of the electrical activity of different brain regions. EEG can be performed in the waking state, during sleep, alone or under the influence of a trigger – factor, artificially stimulating seizure activity.
- Computed tomography of the brain (CT). Before planning brain surgery in Israel, neurosurgeons recommend carrying out a CT test; it lets the neurosurgeon visualize the structure of the brain, as well as to diagnose tumors, hemorrhage, cystic formation, against which the patient may develop seizures.
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), both standard and functional. Epilepsy surgery usually requires a functional MRI to determine the areas of the brain that regulate the processes of speech, motor skills and other critical functions.
- Positron emission tomography (PET)
- Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT). Experts in the field of neurosurgery in Israel recommend having a SPECT scan as well.
Epilepsy Surgery and Treatment in Israel
Treatment of epilepsy usually begins with medication. For most patients, the chronic long-term administration of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) can reliably control the disease and prevent attacks or significantly reduce their frequency. With the ineffectiveness of drug therapy, a possible epilepsy surgery is considered. The indications for surgery are seizures that occur despite medication. Brain surgery in Israel for the treatment of epilepsy is carried out in cases when the source is located outside the areas of the brain responsible for vital functions: speech, motor skills, vision or hearing.
Surgery may be performed to isolate a certain part of the brain. Neurosurgery in Israel widely uses intraoperative MRI capabilities; during surgery, MRI is used for monitoring to ensure that the impact is applied on the selected area of the brain.
Herzliya Medical Center practices innovative methods of surgical treatment for epilepsy, which is a kind of stereotactic surgery. For the destruction of the convulsive center in the brain a laser beam is used, which causes the heating of tissues and their destruction. The laser beam serves as a thin catheter and is conducted into the cavity of the skull. Minimally invasive laser techniques do not require prolonged hospitalization, the patient can return to normal life within a couple of days.