Epilepsy

Iowa Comprehensive Epilepsy Program (ICEP)

The Level 4 Epilepsy Center at UI Hospitals and Clinics provides the highest level of epilepsy care available in the United States, treating epilepsy patients from across the Midwest. ICEP also serves as a resource for neurologists and other neuroscientists from around the country, offering second opinions and expert advice.

The University of Iowa Health Care epilepsy clinic cares for patients with epilepsy and related conditions. We provide specialty services to help you understand your options and effectively manage your condition.

We also have specialized pediatric neurology and neurosurgery programs available to provide expert care for your entire family.

You’ll find diagnosis, education, and treatment for:

  • Epilepsy
    • Focal seizures, also known as partial seizures
    • Generalized seizures
  • Non-epileptic seizures
    • Isolated seizures
    • Psychogenic seizures or pseudoseizures
    • Recurrent symptomatic seizures
  • Other undiagnosed episodic or paroxysmal events
  • Undesirable side effects of anti-epileptic medication

Our adult and pediatric outpatient clinics are great resources for any member of your family that needs help with epilepsy or a related neurological condition. Women with epilepsy may be interested in cooperative care by also consulting with doctors in endocrinology, family medicine, and gynecology.

Older adults with epilepsy often have milder seizures than younger patients, but are often more vulnerable to medication side effects and drug interactions. You can ensure that medications are safely and tolerably administered by consulting with a pharmacologist or geriatrics specialist. Be sure to inform them of any other significant medical problems or medication programs during your consultation.

Find the technology your diagnosis and treatment might require:

  • Electroencephalography (EEG) Laboratory: Offers diagnostic tools for evaluating epilepsy and seizures. Was one of the first five EEG labs in the country and performs over 1,000 EEG studies yearly.

  • Epilepsy Monitoring Unit: Uses a simultaneous video and EEG recording to log one or more typical spells in order to determine their cause, nature, and optimal treatment.

  • Epilepsy surgery program: Through the neurosurgery department, addresses seizures that are resistant to treatment. If your seizures arise from a single, identifiable area of the brain, you may be a candidate for epilepsy surgery, a neurosurgical procedure that removes the abnormal area that is producing the seizures. The neurology and neurosurgery departments will work closely together to determine if you are a candidate for surgery.

  • Functional neuroimaging tests: Tests such as Positron Emission Tomography (PET) and ictal and interictal Single Photon Emission Tomography (SPECT) are available to measure blood flow or metabolism in different areas of the brain.

  • Ketogenic diet: A very precise and specific diet that may reduce or potentially eliminate seizures in patients who do not respond to medication. Patients and parents work with a team consisting of a dietitian, nurse, pharmacist, and physician to start and regulate the diet.

  • Neuroradiology and functional neuroimaging: These services help doctors evaluate patients for underlying structural or functional brain dysfunction.

  • Magnetic Resonance Image (MRI): Scan done in a specialized manner for people with seizures to identify brain lesions associated with them such as scar tissue or regions of abnormal brain development. The findings from an MRI may help guide therapy by helping a doctor choose the best surgical or medical treatment method for a patient.

  • Vagus nerve stimulator (VNS): An outpatient surgical option to implant a small generator that sends painless stimulation to the brain with the goal of interrupting seizure potential. Generally used when medicines have not worked and if surgery is not an option. 

For detailed information about your neurology visit, please see our About Your Neurology Visit guide.

If you are interested in finding out more about the department of Neurology, our research and educational programs, news and events, or how you can give by donating, please visit our academic and departmental website.

Learn more about epilepsy and your treatment options at UI Hospitals and Clinics

Take advantage of additional information from these reputable groups

Support epilepsy research

If you are interested in donating to epilepsy research at Iowa, please see our foundation website (see Epilepsy Research Fund).

Care Team