Epilepsy and Seizures

The Nuvance Health Neuroscience Institute offer state-of-the-art care and access to epilepsy specialists available nowhere else in the region.

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With epilepsy, seizures can leave you feeling as if your life is on hold. Specialists at Nuvance Health® put you back in control. We are one of the few programs with epilepsy-trained neurologists (epileptologists) in New York’s Hudson Valley and Western Connecticut. These specialists have experience with common and complex forms of epilepsy, including types that are difficult to diagnose and treat.

Our goal is to help you become seizure-free and resume everyday activities. Even if other treatments have not been successful, we have the capabilities, services and experience to improve your well-being. Eligible patients have access to a broad range of therapies including new medications through clinical trials and surgical procedures.

What Is Epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a condition that causes disturbances in the brain’s electrical activity, resulting in frequent seizures. These disturbances can start in different areas of the brain and affect you in several ways. Being able to identify the type of seizure helps you receive appropriate care.

When a seizure occurs, you may experience: Confusion Staring spells Jerking movements Loss of awareness Behavioral changes, including anxiety or irritability

Epilepsy and Seizure Disorder Care at Nuvance Health: Why Choose Us?

Many patients receive care from experienced specialists in epilepsy care. The team includes fellowship-trained epileptologists who can consult when appropriate. Highlights of our program include:

  • Comprehensive evaluation
    Your evaluation may include advanced imaging technology (3 Tesla magnetic resonance imaging) that provides high-resolution images of the brain. Nuvance Health is also one of the few programs in the region offering inpatient video-EEG testing. This advanced test helps us evaluate complex forms of epilepsy and whether treatments are working.
  • Specialized care
    We tailor therapies for patients with complex needs. For example, older adults and pregnant women may respond differently to epilepsy medications. Regular monitoring helps us ensure you are on the correct medication and dose, and that side effects are bearable.
  • Clinical trials
    Epilepsy research at Nuvance Health often involves clinical trials that test promising new medications and care techniques. If you are eligible for a trial and wish to participate, we explain if you are a candidate and how a clinical trial may help you.
  • Seizure detection devices
    If you experience severe seizures, we may recommend this type of device, which is worn on your wrist. The device alerts your loved one’s cell phone if you experience a seizure episode, so they can help you.
Inpatient Epilepsy Testing in Our Epilepsy Monitoring Unit

When seizures are difficult to diagnose or control, monitoring helps us to learn more. By staying in the hospital for a few days, you make it possible for us to record seizures in real-time. You stay in a comfortable, private room with plenty of space for a loved one, while our care team monitors you around the clock.

  • The EEG records brain activity during a seizure, enabling us to pinpoint the source of the activity in the brain.
  • Video monitoring captures brain activity occurring before, during and after a seizure episode.

We recommend Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU) testing if you have:

  • Not experienced a seizure during an office visit: An EMU stay makes it possible to observe your symptoms and brain activity
  • An epilepsy diagnosis but medications aren’t working: The information we gather during EMU testing helps guide the treatments necessary to maximize your treatment options.
  • New seizure symptoms or other changes to seizure episodes: Video-EEG monitoring provides valuable information that helps us adjust therapies to your changing needs.


Epilepsy Treatments

Experienced seizure specialists at Nuvance Health may improve your chances of becoming seizure-free. Treatments help control seizure activity so you can get back to the activities that are important to you. Your care plan may include:

  • Anti-seizure medications: You have access to the latest medications. Our experience from treating a high volume of patients means you receive the treatment option and dose that’s best for you.
  • Epidiolex® purified cannabidiol (CBD): This FDA-approved option has been clinically demonstrated to be safe and effective for seizures.
  • Implantable device management: If medications are not successful, a responsive neurostimulation (RNS) device may help. The device detects abnormal electrical activity, and sends gentle electrical pulses to specific areas of the brain to stop it. We help you get more out of RNS by ensuring the device is charged and working properly.
  • Vagus nerve stimulator: This small implantable device delivers mild electrical impulses that help control seizures by stimulating the vagus nerve. The device goes under the skin near your chest and you likely will not notice the impulses. In some cases, they can significantly reduce seizure activity.

Support for Epilepsy Patients

  • Pre-pregnancy counseling: If you are a woman who wishes to start a family, specialists can help you have a safe pregnancy. Counseling may include discussing potential risks and steps we can take to help you manage them.
  • Neuropsychology evaluations: Licensed neuropsychologists perform a series of tests to determine whether epilepsy affects your thinking or memory. These specialists also provide recommendations for therapies and services to help you cope with these challenges.
  • Telehealth visits: In the early stages of your care, getting to doctor’s appointments can be challenging, especially if it’s not safe for you to drive. You may be able to speak with epileptologists without leaving home through telehealth visits.

Additional Information About Epilepsy and Seizure Disorders

Learn more about epilepsy and seizure disorders by visiting the American Epilepsy Society.