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Neuroimaging case studies

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Katie's story

Katie Russell began to experience seizures at the age of 10. By 26 she was experiencing up to 15 seizures a night and sometimes during the day. She experienced extreme exhaustion which, combined with her medications, meant she struggled with concentration on tasks such as reading a novel or holding a conversation with a friend.

In July 2011 Katie underwent brain surgery using the very latest 'satnav' or 3D multi modal imaging to create a map of her brain. This enabled Professor John Duncan and his team at the UCLH National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery to locate where her seizures were coming from in a thumb sized section of her brain called the right supplementary motor area.

Katie has not had a seizure to date thanks to the surgery and came off all her epilepsy medication by Oct 2011. She describes herself as a fit and healthy mum who loves having her life and energy back.

"I'd ruled out having a baby because I was always so drugged up and worried about conceiving while on a cocktails of epilepsy drugs” said Katie. "After the surgery and once my medication was reduced to nil, I knew in myself I was ready to enter into motherhood. Tilly is now four and a half. She has started school and absolutely loves it. I really do hope more epilepsy patients are able to benefit from this procedure as I have done."

Katie Russell

Emma's story

Emma Johnstone had experienced partial seizures since the age of seven. She underwent brain surgery for temporal lobe epilepsy 10 years ago to remove the scarred area of her brain that was causing her seizures and has been seizure free ever since. She is now a qualified nurse and has a two-year-old son, Archie.

Emma said: 'I'm so lucky to be where I am now, thanks to Professor John Duncan and everyone at Epilepsy Society. If I hadn't had that operation I'm not sure my life would have been quite the same. Archie is gorgeous.'


Read how we are working to understand the genetic architecture of each individual person's epilepsy through our world leading genomics research programme.