At the Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, our six-bed Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU), the most modern in North Carolina, is dedicated to confirming a diagnosis of epilepsy and pinpointing seizure activity and origin.
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 a biomedical engineer.
Epilepsy Diagnostic Tests
The EMU provides services for all ages, from neonatal to geriatric patients.
Patients evaluated for epilepsy surgery receive the most sophisticated tests available today. The Comprehensive Epilepsy Center is one of only a 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.
The procedures most frequently performed include prolonged video-EEG monitoring for both seizure diagnosis and pre-surgical evaluation (Phase I Monitoring and Phase II Monitoring) for epilepsy surgery.
Our tests include:
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Positron emission tomography (PET)
- Single positron emission tomography scan (SPECT)
- Source analysis
- Magnetoencephalography (MEG)
- Pulsed arterial spin labeling (PASL)
- Neuropsychological tests
- Intracranial EEG
Other ancillary procedures performed include:
- Wada studies
- PET EEGs
- Tilt table EEGs
- Cortial mapping
- ICU monitoring
- Ambulatory monitoring
Your Stay in the EMU
Patients are required to have a family member present at all times during their stay in the EMU.
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.
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. Learn more about the epilepsy research being conducted at Wake Forest Baptist.
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.