Brain Surgery

If your epilepsy is still poorly controlled after trying treatment with AEDs, you may be referred to a specialist epilepsy centre to see if you are suitable for surgery to remove the part of your brain causing your seizures.
This involves having various types of brain scans to find out where the epilepsy is focused. Memory and psychological tests are also conducted to assess how you are likely to cope with the stress of surgery and how it might affect you.
Surgery is only recommended when:

  • a single area of the brain is causing seizures (partial or focal seizures)
  • removing that part of the brain would not cause any significant loss of brain function

As with all types of surgery, this procedure carries a number of risks. This includes a risk of serious problems such as memory problems and strokes after the operation. However, around 70% of people who have epilepsy surgery become completely free of seizures.
Before having the procedure, your surgeon will explain to you the benefits and risks of the surgery.
Most people normally recover from the effects of surgery after a few days, but it could be several months before you are fully fit and able to return to work.