For children with epilepsy, seizures can change or complicate life in different ways. At the Washington University Pediatric Epilepsy Center at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, we understand. Our epilepsy specialty clinics are set up to meet the unique needs of children who experience seizures.
Our nationally ranked team of pediatric experts diagnose and treat the most complex forms of epilepsy. We use the latest care advances, including genetic testing for epilepsy and surgery, to help more children experience life with fewer limits.
New Onset Seizure/Spell Clinic
At the New Onset Seizure/Spell Clinic, we fast-track access to expert care after children first experience a seizure or spell concerning for a seizure. Children receive a comprehensive evaluation by a certified pediatric nurse practitioner (CPNP) within 1 to 2 weeks of referral.
We may recommend your child undergo certain tests, such as an EEG, as part of their initial evaluation. We may make recommendations for additional testing, such as a head MRI, based on further evaluation. Our team will explain what tests may be needed and why.
Often, diagnostic tests offer details about what causes seizures in children. This information leads us to the most effective treatments for your child. You can get all tests completed right here at the Pediatric Epilepsy Center.
We then develop a treatment plan that’s customized to your child. For many children who experience seizures, medication alone controls symptoms. Some children who have a single seizure may not need any treatment. You can trust our team to base their recommendations on the latest science.
Learn more about what you can expect for your child’s diagnosis and treatment in our helpful guide to the patient journey.
Ketogenic Diet for Epilepsy Clinic
Dietary therapies can offer significant benefits to children with difficult-to-treat epilepsy. Some children experience complete seizure relief after two years of following a strict ketogenic (very low carb, high-fat) diet.
Dietary therapies require specialized guidance and sometimes a big family commitment. At this clinic, also called the Dietary Therapies Clinic for Neurological Disorders, we evaluate and monitor children who follow dietary therapies for epilepsy treatment.
Learn more about the Ketogenic Diet for Epilepsy Clinic.
Pediatric Epilepsy Advanced Technologies Clinic
At the Pediatric Epilepsy Advanced Technologies Clinic, we make it easier for families to access our specialists’ expertise when medication doesn’t control a child’s seizures. Multiple doctors come together to thoroughly evaluate your child, quickly, with the help of a concierge-style nurse navigator.
Here, you can sit down with one or more of our pediatric epilepsy experts for an in-depth conversation. We take whatever time is needed to fully assess your child’s health and help you arrange any additional tests they may need. We explain how the latest treatment options, such as epilepsy surgery, may benefit your child and answer your questions.
Once our specialists have the diagnostic details they need, they meet to discuss your child’s care. We speak with you and, together, we create a treatment plan to best control or stop your child’s seizure symptoms.
Learn more about Pediatric Epilepsy Advanced Technologies Clinic.
Rett Spectrum Clinic
Rett syndrome is a rare genetic condition that can cause severe developmental limitations and health issues, including seizures. CDKL5 is a similar, rare genetic disorder located on the X chromosome. Our doctors have deep experience in the diagnosis and treatment of Rett syndrome and Rett-related disorders, including MECP2 duplication, CDKL5, and FOXG1.
At the Rett Spectrum Clinic, you can visit with multiple professionals, including neurologists, augmentative communication specialists (trained in using facial expressions and body language to communicate), therapists and nutrition professionals, in one day. Our mission is to provide a clinical home for children with Rett Spectrum disorders where we can:
- Enhance children’s overall quality of life
- Provide support and education to families
- Help children find their voice
- Empower families to act as an advocate for their children
- Serve as a resource to help families access research and innovation
Learn more about the Rett Spectrum Clinic.
Tuberous Sclerosis Clinic
Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) is a rare genetic disease that causes tumors to develop in the skin, kidney, brain, heart, eyes, lungs and many other organs. A child with TSC may have mild to severe symptoms. Neurological issues are often the most disabling symptoms of TSC. In particular, TSC is the leading genetic cause of epilepsy and autism.
The Tuberous Sclerosis Clinic is part of the Washington University Tuberous Sclerosis Center. Our doctors are experts at diagnosing and treating this complex condition. A team of specialists provide comprehensive care and help you manage every way tuberous sclerosis affects your child’s life. Our team also guides you to resources that make it easier to get the care your child needs.
Genetic Epilepsy Evaluation Clinic
Some causes of epilepsy are genetic (due to an abnormality in one of the body’s genes). At the Genetic Epilepsy Evaluation Clinic, families can meet with doctors who have epilepsy and genetics expertise, at one appointment.
Our pediatric neurologists and geneticists work together to fully evaluate what’s causing your child’s seizures. We use specialized epilepsy genetic tests to determine whether a child’s seizures may be due to a genetic condition such as Rett syndrome. A precise diagnosis helps us recommend treatments that are best for your child.