The Conemaugh Health System is proud to announce a three bed addition and technology upgrade to the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU) at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center. The new EMU will allow for a more efficient distribution of care for epilepsy patients in the region.
The event will be celebrated in the atrium of Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center on August 5, 2013, with opening remarks by Dr. Alfred P. Bowles, Jr., MD, FAANS, FACS, FICS, Director of the John P. Murtha Neuroscience and Pain Institute and Director and Chair of Neuroscience and Neurosurgery, beginning at 11 a.m.
Every year, 180,000 Americans are diagnosed with epilepsy. Epilepsy is a disease of the central nervous system that causes misfiring of electrical signals in the brain, triggering seizures of varying severity. In rare cases, seizures caused by epilepsy can lead to brain trauma and even sudden death. Epilepsy treatment is often complicated due to the difficulty in discovering the cause of the misfiring, and where the misfiring is occurring in the brain.
“Although many cases of epilepsy can be managed with medication, 20 to 30 percent of patients with epilepsy require surgery to resect the area of the brain responsible for the misfiring,” says Dr. Bowles. “Individuals who receive this procedure report large declines in seizure frequency and improved quality of life. Candidates for surgery are difficult to select without the aid of an epilepsy monitoring unit. The EMU allows physicians and surgeons to pinpoint the location, severity, and frequency of seizures in order to select an area of the brain to remove.”
The EMU now includes three beds organized for extended stay of patients with constant monitoring by computer-assisted electroencephalogram (EEG) technology and audio/ video monitoring. A visit to the EMU will enable physicians to appropriately select a care plan specific for that patient. Typically, it takes the Epilepsy team 3 to 5 days to evaluate the seizure activity. Family members are welcome to remain with the patient in the unit for support and comfort.
The event on August 5th is open to the public and will include community-based education on seizures, treatment of epilepsy, social services, and giveaways. All are encouraged to attend to learn more about the upgrades and improvements in the EMU.
For More Information, Please Contact:
Amy Bradley, Director of Public Affairs
Phone: (814) 534-3121