Laser ablation surgery to help with epilepsy

Laser ablation surgery to help patients dealing with epilepsy (WKRC)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX) – A unique type of surgery is changing the lives of people who struggle with epilepsy, especially Jennifer Casto.

Casto has dealt with epilepsy for many years now and constantly relied on others for help when she was limited from certain activities, such as driving.

“Just losing that sense of freedom is very difficult,” says Casto.

Medications no longer became beneficial, so Casto became a candidate for a surgery called laser ablation.

“Anything that can bring a sense of hope is worth pursuing,” says Casto.

The surgery is known to be minimally-invasive and calls for a quick recovery time unlike typical brain surgeries.

Neurosurgeon Girish Hiremath says that during the surgery, the brain is practically burned away.

“A laser catheter is passed into the structures of the brain that are diseased which are producing seizures,” says Hiremath.

Epilepsy is a well-known chronic condition suffered by many in the United States. About 1 in 26 people can develop epilepsy.

The term “freedom” can come in distinct forms and mean so many different things depending on who you are. For Jennifer, what the surgery did was take it away.

“It allows me to drive again which is such freedom,” says Casto.

Casto has not dealt with a seizure for a year and a half since the surgery.

Doctors strongly recommend having families discuss any type of surgery together in order to discuss the risks and benefits.

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