The epilepsy monitoring unit is a dedicated inpatient program using simultaneous video and electroencephalogram (EEG) to evaluate, diagnose and treat patients with seizures or episodes suspected to be seizures. In addition, portable video/EEG will be available for complex intensive care unit (ICU) patients with unexplained unresponsiveness.
West Chester Hospital is the only community hospital offering inpatient epilepsy monitoring services. The West Chester unit will have the support of University of Cincinnati (UC) Medical Center neurology services, with eight UC Gardner Neuroscience Institute physicians seeing patients on the West Chester campus.
“We are very excited to be able to provide this specialized service for our community,” said Tom Daskalakis, chief administrative officer at West Chester Hospital. “This new monitoring unit allows us to respond to a growing need for epilepsy care while allowing patients to stay close to home.”
Jennifer Cavitt, MD, professor of neurology at UC College of Medicine, and Michael Privitera, MD, professor and director of the Epilepsy Center at the UC Gardner Neuroscience Institute, will lead the West Chester Hospital Epilepsy Monitoring Unit.
“I believe in striving for seizure freedom without side effects using a variety of treatments,” said Cavitt. “The addition of this new unit will bring to the community the type of care that can lead to that freedom.”
The program will begin with two designated beds, with plans to expand to six beds over time. The highly specialized, mobile equipment will also allow physicians to monitor ICU patients at West Chester Hospital.
“New discoveries have shown that some people in ICUs with persistent coma or unresponsiveness have unrecognized seizures,” said Privitera. “This unit will allow us to diagnose and treat seizures in patients with the most acute injuries in the hopes of helping them make a full recovery.”
UC Health is the only healthcare system in the region to offer inpatient epilepsy monitoring. An epilepsy monitoring unit is an essential part of a certified level 4 – the highest level – epilepsy center, a designation UC Health has maintained for almost 20 years. The UC Epilepsy team is globally recognized for new discoveries and advanced treatment of epilepsy with medication and innovative surgical techniques. Epilepsy is the fourth most common neurological illness in the U.S. More than 2 million people are living with epilepsy in the U.S.