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How can surgery help with epilepsy?

Surgery can help with epilepsy. Surgeons can resect a portion of brain if it is causing the seizures, or place a vagus nerve stimulator to help reduce the amount of seizures.

Patients are candidates for surgery if seizures are isolated in one part of the brain. For instance, in an anterior temporal lobectomy, the front portion of the temporal lobe is removed. This is the most common type of epilepsy surgery.

Surgeons also can remove parts of other lobes or disconnect parts of the brain that are not properly communicating. One such surgery is called a corpus callosotomy, which cuts away the white matter that connects the hemispheres of the brain.

These surgeries can be performed on children and adults. These surgeries remove only the damaged part of the brain, and do not seem to result in either brain damage or new seizure centers.

In some cases, patients show intellectual improvement after surgery.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.