Parents with children who sufer from pediatric epilepsy or need professional assistance controlling seizures can turn to the Epilepsy Program at Atlantic Health System Children's Health. We are a Level 4 epilepsy center – the highest designation achievable from the National Association of Epilepsy Centers – signifying that we provide the most comprehensive medical, neuropsychological and psychosocial epilepsy treatments available.
Physician services are provided through Atlantic Medical Group and are on staff at Goryeb Children’s Hospital.
Diagnostic Tests for Pediatric Epilepsy
Although epilepsy symptoms can begin at any age, most children are diagnosed between the ages of 13 and 16. Patients new to our program receive a complete medical evaluation, including a recorded description of what occurred prior to the seizure and what the seizure looked like. Next, an electroencephalogram (EEG) is typically used to record brainwaves that may reveal a tendency for epilepsy. Our video EEG monitoring is available in a child-friendly inpatient setting to accommodate tests lasting 24 to 48 hours.
Treatment for Pediatric Epilepsy
A standard course of treatment for epilepsy typically includes medicines, diets and surgery, if necessary. The majority of patients only need one medication to safely control their seizures and have virtually no limitations on their daily activities. In cases where a second medication is needed, our epilepsy child neurologists will implement a comprehensive treatment plan.
However, treatment for epilepsy will vary depending on if the patient is diagnosed with another condition. For example, many epilepsy patients also experience anxiety, depression or mood disorders. Medications that may have an adverse effect on behavior may not be prescribed in these cases. Our medical team will also work closely with pediatric behavioral health and child life specialists to help children manage any co-existing psychiatric disorders.
In addition, treatment plans may be adjusted if epileptic seizures are caused by a brain tumor. For these patients, medications are first prescribed, but if two different drugs are proven ineffective, then surgical removal of the tumor may be necessary.
Once patients reach adulthood, their care is seamlessly transferred to the Level 4 designated Epilepsy Center at Overlook Medical Center.