Epilepsy Monitoring Unit
The Wake Forest Baptist Health Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU) provides diagnosis and evaluations for people with suspected epilepsy. While this dedicated six-bed unit is an inpatient facility, outpatient monitoring is also available. We also provide neurointensive monitoring in the intensive care unit (ICU) and Video-Electroencephalograph (EEG) monitoring services.
Experienced Epilepsy Team
In addition to physicians who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy, the EMU hosts a highly skilled multi-disciplinary team, including registered EEG technologists, dedicated epilepsy nurses, neuroradiologists, neuropsychologists, recreational therapists, a unit coordinator, a dedicated social worker, and biomedical engineer.
All Ages Tested
The EMU provides services for all ages, from neonatal to geriatric patients. The procedures most frequently performed include prolonged Video-EEG monitoring for both seizure diagnosis and presurgical evaluation (Phase I Monitoring and Phase II Monitoring) for epilepsy surgery.
Epilepsy Diagnostic Tests
Patients evaluated for epilepsy surgery receive the most sophisticated tests available today. The Comprehensive Epilepsy Center is one of few centers in the southeastern United States with extensive nuclear medicine facilities in the monitoring unit, allowing radioisotope injection for single photon emission tomography (SPECT) scanning during a seizure.
Our tests include:
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) 3T
- Positron emission tomography (PET) scans
- Single positron emission tomography scan (SPECT)
- Source Analysis
- Magnetoencephalography (MEG)
- Pulsed Arterial Spin Labeling (PASL)
- Neuropsychological tests
- Intracranial EEG are also available to confirm the seizure focus
Other ancillary procedures performed include:
- Wada studies
- PET EEGs
- Tilt Table EEGs
- Cortial Mapping
- ICU monitoring
- Ambulatory monitoring
Patients are required to have a family member present at all times during their stay in the EMU.
Outpatient and Mobile Video-EEG Monitoring
For some patients, monitoring on an outpatient basis is recommended, and it is possible to continue video-EEG monitoring on an appointment basis, without the necessity of checking into the hospital. For patients hospitalized but unable to be transferred to the EMU, mobile monitoring equipment is utilized.
Once the diagnosis of epilepsy is established, the physicians and support staff reassess the adequacy of drug treatment for adjustment or change. As an active participant in the development of new anti-convulsant drugs, our Comprehensive Epilepsy Center can offer eligible patients an opportunity to participate in clinical trials for medications.
EMU Location and Times
The EMU operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week. EMU nurses staff the unit around-the-clock, and EEG technical support is available 24 hours a day.