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of everyone affected by epilepsy

Pre-surgery tests lead to better prediction of brain issues: research

5 April, 2006

Researchers have
developed a new technique to help reduce the risk of damage to the
memory and language functions of people with epilepsy undergoing brain
surgery.

Neurologists from the National Society for Epilepsy
(NSE) used tests called EEG-fMRI (electroencephalogram-functional
magnetic resonance imaging) and MRT (magnetic resonance tractography).
These allow doctors to get a clear picture of which brain areas are
involved in language and memory function and how these connect to other
brain regions. They can now identify which part of the brain remembers
words, faces or pictures, which helps minimise risks to patients
considering undergoing surgery.

NSE researcher Dr Rob Powell said:

"These
advances in scanning technology are providing us with a more detailed
picture of how the brain works and increasing the number of people
suitable for surgery. Operating on the brain will never be risk-free
but this breakthrough is improving the outcome for many patients."