Studying Seizures

Mar 27, 2013

Eunice Louis at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital in the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit.

Ten percent of Virginians will have a seizure during their lifetime.  Determining the cause and correct course of treatment can often be a long and expensive process. 

But a new hospital unit in Roanoke is dedicated to finding the cause and getting patients get the help they need.

Tucked away on the 7th East floor at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital is the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit, a diagnostic tool unique to Western Virginia 

The closest such units are at the University of Virginia, Duke, and Wake Forest, and some of those have a long waiting list to get in.

To find out why her seizures have changed and to prescribe a new course of treatment, Eunice has come to the Epilepsy Monitoring Unit or EMU.

The Roanoke unit can serve three patients at a time and patients live at the EMU for up to five days while in a room down the hall, medical technicians monitor their vital signs and every movement on computer screens 24/7.

Eunice Louis of Roanoke has had epilepsy for more than 40 years.  But recently her seizures have changed, so she's  staying in the EMU for several days to find out why, so that a new course of treatment can be prescribed.