“Epilepsy is a pretty devastating disease. It affects not only the patient, but the family and the friends, and the whole entire social circle.”

Patients with epilepsy can in some cases have surgical procedures, both invasive and minimally invasive, which can result in their freedom from seizures, essentially curing them of their epilepsy. However, the number of candidates who undergo these surgeries remains lower than expected.

For epilepsy surgeons such as Sumeet Vadera, MD, associate professor of neurosurgery, and director, epilepsy surgery, UC Irvine, this is a painful truth. At the 73rd annual meeting of the American Epilepsy Society (AES), December 6-10, 2019, in Baltimore, Maryland, he told NeurologyLive of the consequences that patients can face by forgoing such procedures—most notably that uncontrolled seizures remain uncontrolled.

Additionally, he said, there are often fears about patients getting lost in the system when they leave the comfort of their epileptologist’s care for care in a surgical center. Getting patients referred to a Level 4 surgical center such as UC Irvine’s can help, Vadera said, as these centers are well-equipped. As well, he and his colleagues seek to ensure communication and collaboration with their main provider.

For more coverage of AES 2019, click here.