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The Epilepsy program has an active research program led by three epileptologists

Neuroimaging of Epilepsy and Application of machine learning to neuroimaging and neurophysiological data

Gavin Winston is a clinician scientist specialising in neuroimaging of epilepsy and the application of machine learning to neuroimaging and neurophysiological data. Current projects include:

  1. Neuroimaging and robotic assessment of cognitive disorders in epilepsy: Cognitive disorders are common in people with epilepsy but often undetected due to limited availability of neuropsychological assessment. We are evaluating automated detection of cognitive disorders using a robot developed at Queen's called Kinarm and exploring the neuroimaging correlates with functional and structural connectivity.
  2. Machine learning applied to multimodal MRI: In patients with refractory focal epilepsy being considered for epilepsy surgery, MRI scans are often normal which makes offering surgery challenging. We are working with the School of Computing to improve the localisation of abnormalities by applying machine learning to multimodal MRI data.
  3. Language functional MRI and multimodal imaging: In the assessment of patients for epilepsy surgery, additional scans such as language functional MRI to localise critical language areas and diffusion MRI to localise white matter structures are key. These can be integrated into a 3D multimodal model for surgical planning. We are implementing these techniques in our District Epilepsy Center.
  4. Prediction of outcomes from cardiac arrest: Neuroprognostication after cardiac arrest is important for deciding appropriate treatment. With the School of Computing, we are applying machine learning and deep learning techniques to combined clinical and quantitative EEG data to improve current prognostic algorithms.

Genetics and epilepsy, Ketogenic Diet, continuous EEG

The utility of epilepsy gene panels in adult patients with ID, autism and refractory epilepsy. The genetics of cardiac arrhythmia and epilepsy, and the genetics of sudden unexpected\unexplained death in epilepsy (SUDEP). The utility of the ketogenic diet for super-refractory status epilepticus in the ICU. Maintaining the ketogenic diet in paediatric patients transitioning to the adult Epilepsy Clinic. EEG as a biomarker for prognosis in the intensive care unit with a focus on sleep architecture. In collaboration with Dr. Gavin Winston, quantitative EEG as a prognostic factor for patients admitted to the ICU post-hypoxic ischemic injury following cardiac arrest. In collaboration with Dr. Ramana Appireddy and Dr. Garima Shukla, Telemedicine as an assessment and teaching tool in the Epilepsy Clinic.

Cannabis and Sleep Quality

Dr Shukla is exploring ways in which use of Cannabis affects the quality of sleep in patients affected by sleep disorders and epilepsy.