Pediatric Epilepsy Surgery Program at UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

Many kids with epilepsy can be seizure-free with medicine. But for a third of children, seizures persist despite trying many drugs.

If two different medicines can't help control your child's seizures, epilepsy surgery may be an option. Ask your child's neurologist to refer them to UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh's Epilepsy Surgery Program.

Our goal is for your child to:

  • Stop having seizures.
  • Have an improved quality of life.
  • Reach their fullest potential.

Is Epilepsy Surgery Right for My Child?

Before they advise surgery, your child's epilepsy neurologist and surgeon must:

  • Confirm your child still has seizures after trying two distinct medicines.
  • Pinpoint the site of the seizures.

The team will offer the right treatment for your child that won't impair how they function.

Mapping brain function prior to surgery

Using the latest brain mapping imaging technology, our experts can find the part of the brain causing your child's seizures.

Neurosurgeons then do thorough testing on that part of your child's brain. This lets them know if taking out that part will cause major problems, such as with speech and understanding.

In some cases, our team will briefly block the function of the part of the brain they plan to remove. This will ensure that your child can still do all the things they can do now.

Why Choose UPMC Children's Hospital for Epilepsy Surgery?

Because our program:

  • Offers complete care to kids with epilepsy that doesn't respond to drugs.
  • Does more than 120 epilepsy surgeries for kids each year, including 50 vagus nerve stimulator implants.
  • Is the only center in the Pittsburgh region that provides thorough pre-op testing and a range of epilepsy surgery techniques.
  • Offers the chance to take part in the latest research and access to resources to manage complex cases.
  • Provides fast reviews, done at the same time by many experts all in one place.

UPMC Children's Epilepsy Research and Clinical Trials

There are better treatments for childhood epilepsy now than ever before, but we believe we can still find more.

Our research is yielding new results that may lead to simpler, more healing treatments with fewer side effects.

Learn More About Childhood Epilepsy

Contact the Epilepsy Surgery Program at UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh

To make a referral, schedule an appointment, or request an evaluation for a child or teen, contact us at 412-692-6928 or email