Under the leadership of Ekaterina Pataraia, Head of the Epilepsy Outpatient Clinic at the Department of Neurology, and Karl Rössler, Head of the Department of Neurosurgery at University Hospital Vienna and MedUni Vienna, the first patient in Austria was treated with the EASEE system at the beginning of August 2023. EASEE stands for "Epicranial Application of Stimulation Electrodes for Epilepsy" and is based on an innovative method of individualised brain stimulation. When the system is implanted, fine electrodes are placed precisely over the epileptic origin in the brain without having to open the skull bone or touch the brain tissue. The stimulation therapy aims to stabilise the overactive brain function in epilepsy and to interrupt potentially occurring seizures.
"The thin platelet electrodes are not visible from the outside and ensure unrestricted freedom of movement for the patient. The therapeutic impulses are individually adjustable and can be regularly optimised over the course of the treatment. The stimulation is not perceived by the patients," say Karl Rössler and Ekaterina Pataraia.
Epilepsy is one of the most common chronic neurological diseases. In epileptic seizures, due to excessive hypersynchronic discharges of the human brain, depending on the area of the brain affected, there is a temporary appearance of different symptoms such as motor (uncontrolled muscle twitching or movement), sensory sensations, a change in vision, but also emotional and cognitive changes. The treated patient has left-brain therapy-resistant temporal lobe epilepsy. Due to the proximity to essential brain regions, surgical resection of the affected area would not have been an option for the patient. It is hoped that the use of this novel treatment will reduce the frequency and severity of seizures.