January 29, 2019

Ohio State Leading World’s First Study Using Focused Ultrasound to Treat Epilepsy

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Image Credit: OSU

In a first-in-world clinical trial, researchers at The Ohio State University College of Medicine are studying how well focused ultrasound surgery works in adults with a specific type of epilepsy whose seizures are not controlled by medication.

Up to 10 adults with the “medically refractory lobe focal onset” type of epilepsy will be enrolled in this study. The technique uses magnetic resonance-guided focused ultrasound through an intact skull to reach tissue deep in the brain without incisions or radiation. With this technology, 1,024 ultrasound beams pass through the scalp, skull and brain tissue without causing any harm and converge at a focal point to ablate specific brain tissue involved in epilepsy.

“We’re pursuing this clinical trial because we know there’s a large unmet clinical need. More than 20 million people worldwide live with uncontrollable seizures because no available treatment works for them,” said neurosurgeon Dr. Vibhor Krishna, who is leading the study at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and Ohio State’s Neurological Institute. “Our goals are to test the safety of this procedure and study changes in seizure frequency in these patients.”

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