Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai
Dr. Siddharth Deepak Kharkar
MBBS, MD (Neurology, USA), MHS
Recognized as one of the
Best Neurologists in Mumbai
By India Today magazine (2020, 2021, 2023) & Outlook India Magazine (2020, 2023).
Sometimes, we search for things like the “Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India”. But is there really such a single person?
I would propose that you will find many doctors who are the “Best” epilepsy specialists for you.
Very rare is the case when a particular person specializes in a very particular, rare kind of epilepsy (e.g. a specialist in Dravet syndrome). These rare doctors are almost never seen outside European/US research institutes.
Instead, there are many, many very good doctors for Epilepsy. What I would advise you to focus on is to find the Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India for YOU.
Doing this requires you to understand your illness, and then find a well-trained Epilepsy expert with whom you can talk comfortably.
Table of Contents
Why should you see an Epilepsy Specialist (Seizure specialist) in Mumbai?
Epilepsy can be difficult to diagnose. Some seizures may be misdiagnosed as heart problems. Very tragically, many patients are told that they are making up their symptoms.
If your epilepsy is not properly diagnosed, you may want to see an Epilepsy specialist (seizure specialist). If you are in Mumbai, then seeing an Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India is the most reasonable course of action.
After proper diagnosis, what percentage of epilepsy is controlled by medications?
This is a very high number. About 8 in 10 individuals STOP HAVING SEIZURES with medications alone.
Earlier, a number of 70% was used. However, with newer medications the chances of success are higher.
What should the remaining 20%, whose seizures keep happening, do to have a productive life?
They need to pursue additional testing. These patients need to see a Epilepsy (seizure) specialist. Some patients may need surgery to STOP their seizures completely.
What is an video EEG monitoring or Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU) in Mumbai?
The Epilepsy Monitoring Unity (EMU) are specially equipped rooms, used for precise diagnosis of seizure-like episodes.
3 things are continuously recorded in the EMU:
- EEG: This records the brain’s electrical activity.
- ECG: This records the heart’s activity.
One of the Epilepsy Monitoring Units in Mumbai is located at the Nanavati Hosptial in Vile Parle. I conduct all my video EEGs in Mumbai in this hospital.
For which patients is video EEG monitoring by an Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India important?
Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU) evaluation or video EEG monitoring in Mumbai enables accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Here are 4 examples:
- We can precisely diagnose the type of your attacks. For example, regular seizure medications do not work for stress-related seizures. Counseling and stress reduction is very effective.
- It helps to exactly measure seizure activity. Medications are increased or reduced accordingly.
- If you (or your child’s) EEG is very active at night, steroids need to be given to control seizures.
- It tells us which part of the brain is bad. If you are not responding to medications, epilepsy surgery can remove this bad part.
How long does Epilepsy Monitoring Unit or video EEG monitoring in Mumbai take?
Ideally, all types of events that you are having should be recorded. Ideally, we try to record 2-3 events of each type.
The duration of monitoring depends on seizure frequency. Here is an approximate guide:
|Seizure Frequency||Duration of stay|
|Daily||1 – 3 days|
|3 to 6 days in a week||3 – 5 days|
|2 to 3 days in a week||5 -7 days|
|1 week or less||Variable|
For which patients is seeing an Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India very important?
It is very important to meet an Epilepsy specialist if your seizures are not controlled. There are many reasons why your seizures may not be under control:
- You do not have Epilepsy, but instead have non-Epileptic or stress related seizures (video EEG monitoring is necessary)
- You do not have Epilepsy, but have another serious medical condition such as heart rhythm problems.
- You may be on the wrong type of seizure medication (For example – If you have JME, then carbamazepine can make your condition worse)
- You may have medically resistant Epilepsy and need surgery.
In addition, you may want to meet an Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India if you are concerned about the side-effects of medications. This is particularly important when you are planning to become pregnant. This planning helps prevent damage to the baby.
Some patients may have seizures which are controlled, and want to stop their medications. At this stage, meeting an Epilepsy specialist will help you understand the benefits and risks of stopping your medications.
Is consultation with a Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India necessary before Epilepsy surgery?
Just because there is some abnormality in your MRI does not mean that that particular abnormality is causing the seizures. Frequently, the MRI abnormality and the part of the brain causing the seizures are different.
There are two simple questions you should ask your Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India before undergoing surgery:
- What are the chances of success?
- What is the risk?
Do not be afraid of all the tests that will be done before the surgery. These are harmless and help us know more.
- Tests such as MRI, video EEG monitoring, PET scan, SPECT scan and MEG help us to find out where the seizures are coming from.
- Tests such as fMRI and in rare cases WADA testing help us to locate extremely important areas of the brain. The surgeon then avoids any injury to these areas during surgery.
Usually the abnormal part of the brain is small, and only this area needs to be taken out.
Even though consultation with an seizure specialist is absolutely essential, consultation with an Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India is not absolutely necessary. There are many good Epilepsy specialists now, all over India.
How should you find the Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India?
There is no single Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India.
An epilepsy specialist is usually a Neurologist.
You can follow the following tips to find an Epilepsy specialist who is good for you:
- Find a person who has taken additional training in Epilepsy after his Neurology studies. A lot of this information is available online.
- Find a person who has experience with video-EEG monitoring and Epilepsy surgery.
- Find a person who is not too aggressive, but at the same time a person who is not very timid. IF Epilepsy surgery needs to be done, it is cruel to withhold it from the patient just because the doctor or relatives are scared.
- Above all, find a person who is open to questions and ultimately someone you are comfortable with. It doesn’t matter if that doctor is the Epilepsy Specialist in the World – if he is not ready to answer your questions, and you are not comfortable with him/her – that doctor is not the right epilepsy specialist for you.
Is there such a thing as THE Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India, or even in the entire world?
A well-trained person who understand what he/she is doing, and above all has the best intentions of your patient at heart is THE Best Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai, India for your patient.
You might find more than one person who meets this criteria.
I know that sometimes chronic diseases can be distressing.
I hope this information brings you some relief. As always, I wish you the best.
Dr. Siddharth Kharkar.
MBBS, MD Neurology (USA), MHS
Fellowship in Epilepsy – UCSF, USA
Fellowship in Parkinson’s disease – Kings College London
Dr Balabhai Nanavati hospital,
Swami Vivekananda Rd,
near LIC, LIC Colony,
Suresh Colony, Vile Parle West,
|Caution: This information is not a substitute for professional care. Do not change your medications/treatment without your doctor's permission.|
Dr. Siddharth Kharkar
Dr. Siddharth Kharkar has been recognized as one of the best neurologists in Mumbai by Outlook India magazine and India today Magazine. He is a board certified (American Board of Psychiatry & Neurology certified) Neurologist.
Dr. Siddharth Kharkar is a Epilepsy specialist in Mumbai & Parkinson's specialist in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
He has trained in the best institutions in India, US and UK including KEM hospital in Mumbai, Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, University of California at San Francisco (UCSF), USA & Kings College in London.