Through the generous philanthropic gift of Jack H. Miller, we are proud to provide magnetoencephalography (MEG) brain mapping for pediatric and adult epilepsy and brain surgery patients.
MEG, is one of the world’s most advanced, non-invasive brain mapping technologies available used to precisely locate sources of epilepsy and greatly improve the quality and effectiveness of pre-surgical evaluations. The MEG also localizes special parts of the brain that a surgeon would like to avoid, such as areas that control movement, vision and language.
We are a premier center of excellence and innovation with the only MEG available in West Michigan. The MEG is located at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, the only children’s hospital in Michigan offering this technology.
Paul Ferrari, PhD, MEG technical director, discusses how magnetoencephalography works to create a map of the brain.
First, the MEG tech will attach a combination of 5 head positioning coils and 22 EEG electrodes to the patient’s head. It may feel sticky, but they are not painful. A member of our child life team can be available to help comfort and distract your child during this process.
Next, the MEG tech digitizes the placement of each coil and electrode. The special glasses have a sensor that communicates with a stylus to give 3D coordinates for every coil and electrode. This creates a very precise model of the patient’s head.
Then, the patient will go into the MEG room for the actual exam. Many tests will be completed while the patient is awake, including listening for different sounds, feeling different touches or seeing pictures. Most patients will be asked to sleep for part of the exam. It is very important for the patient to keep their head very still throughout the exam.
When the exam is complete, your doctors and surgeons will have a complete map of the brain to prepare for surgery or create a treatment plan.
In addition to clinical care, the MEG is one of the most advanced tools for neuroscience research. Our team of neuroscience experts is leading cutting-edge applications for pre-surgical brain mapping and discovering new insights into brain disorders. These areas include epilepsy, neurodevelopmental disorders, stroke and traumatic brain Injury, neuromotor rehabilitation, autism, and also early dedication of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
The Magnetoencephalography Center was made possible by Jack Miller. Jack, who served as CEO and president of Howard Miller Company for 48 years, has been a leader in business and philanthropy, supporting a broad scope of initiatives that make West Michigan a better place to live and work. In making this gift, Jack said, “Kindness, compassion, and support for the entire family are vital to the healing process, and Spectrum Health and Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital are filled with hope and healing. I am grateful to be part of a community that is supportive of the health and well-being of future generations and proud to partner with Spectrum Health and Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in reimagining neuroscience care with the latest in advanced medical technology.
Paul Ferrari, PhD
Jeremy Gurumendi, R. EEG T
Magnetoencephalography, or MEG, measures the magnetic fields produced by electrical currents occurring naturally in the brain. The measurements create a comprehensive “map” of the brain that pinpoints sources of seizures as well as other essential brain regions and is instrumental in determining the most effective treatment and surgical options.
Before the exam:
Day of the exam:
Depending on how many tests your doctor orders, and if you are having sedation, the exam can take anywhere from two to four hours, including preparations.
Parents and guardians will be allowed to go in the MEG room with your child to help prepare and settle them before the exam, and then will be escorted to the waiting room for the duration of the exam. In some cases, a parent or guardian may need to stay in the MEG suite.
Our specialists are ready to serve your child and your family.