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Epilepsy and Movement Disorders Program

Minimally Invasive Surgical Options

The Epilepsy and Movement Disorders Program at the University of Pittsburgh, directed by R. Mark Richardson, MD, PhD, encompasses the treatment of movement disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and epilepsy. These brain diseases are similar in that successful neurosurgical treatment requires an expert understanding of the involved brain networks and their potential for modulation by functional neurosurgical procedures, as well as multidisciplinary teams that deliver surgical care to these special groups of patients. 

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) for Movement Disorders
Our department is the only one in Pennsylvania that offers both awake, frame-based DBS and asleep, interventional-MRI based DBS to treat Parkinson’s Disease, Essential Tremor, Dystonia (including Meige syndrome), and pediatric movement disorders. We were also the first in Pennsylvania to offer the St. Jude Infinity DBS System, which employs new technology for precise steering of current towards the desired brain region, maximizing patient outcomes and reducing side effects.

For more information, please visit our Deep Brain Stimulation page.

Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) for Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
DBS may be considered for the treatment of OCD in patients who have had a diagnosis of chronic, severe, treatment-resistant OCD (for at least five years) that  has become disabling.

For more information, please visit or DBS Obsessive Compulsive Disorders page.

Epilepsy Surgery
UPMC Presbyterian also houses the region’s foremost center for the comprehensive neurosurgical treatment of all types of adult epilepsy, including epilepsy caused by lesions visible on MRI (sclerosis, dysplasia, brain tumors, cavernous malformations) and epilepsy where the seizure onset location is not obvious and must be discovered by intracranial monitoring, including stereo-electroencephalography. Part of the University of Pittsburgh Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, the surgery program is one of the busiest in the nation, offering the latest treatments, including responsive neurostimulation and laser thermal ablation, for patients suffering from multiple types of epilepsy. In August 2016, the Epilepsy and Movement Disorders Program became the only program in western Pennsylvania to adopt the ROSA stereotactic robotic system for implantation of electrodes in stereo-electroencephalography (SEEG) surgeries.

For more information, please visit our Adult Epilepsy Surgery page.