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What is nerve stimulation for epilepsy?

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There are two kinds of nerve stimulation for epilepsy:

Vagus nerve stimulation, which involves a nerve that runs from your belly and chest, through your neck, and up to the lower part of your brain. It controls things that are automatic in your body, like your heartbeat. A small device, placed under the skin of your chest and connected to the nerve, sends small bursts of electricity to your brain. You’ll probably still have to take medication.

Responsive neurostimulation, in which a small gadget called a neurostimulator, is put under your scalp. It looks for patterns in your brain activity that can lead to a seizure. When it sees one of these patterns, it sends out a little pulse to interrupt it.

SOURCES:

The Epilepsy Foundation: “Blood Testing,” “Choosing a First Medicine,” “Drug Interactions,” “How Medicines Work,” “If First Medicine Doesn’t Work,” “Ketogenic Diet,” “Responsive Neurostimulation,” “Seizure and Epilepsy Medicines,” “Stopping Medication,” “Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS),” “What’s First?”

Medscape: “Epilepsy and Seizures Medication.”

Mayo Clinic: “Epilepsy: Treatment.”

Yale School of Medicine Comprehensive Epilepsy Center: “How is epilepsy treated?”

UCSF Medical Center: “Epilepsy Treatment.”

Reviewed by Christopher Melinosky on July 24, 2019

SOURCES:

The Epilepsy Foundation: “Blood Testing,” “Choosing a First Medicine,” “Drug Interactions,” “How Medicines Work,” “If First Medicine Doesn’t Work,” “Ketogenic Diet,” “Responsive Neurostimulation,” “Seizure and Epilepsy Medicines,” “Stopping Medication,” “Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS),” “What’s First?”

Medscape: “Epilepsy and Seizures Medication.”

Mayo Clinic: “Epilepsy: Treatment.”

Yale School of Medicine Comprehensive Epilepsy Center: “How is epilepsy treated?”

UCSF Medical Center: “Epilepsy Treatment.”

Reviewed by Christopher Melinosky on July 24, 2019

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