Curing Epilepsy with Expert Skills and Donor-funded Equipment

Donors, like LCBO, help put vital equipment into the hands of expert clinicians, making world-class care possible at Children’s Hospital.

Over 15,000 children with epilepsy across the province are at risk for lasting damage from their seizures that can be devastating. From behavioural problems and intellectual disabilities to a high likelihood of depression, severe anxiety and harsh side effects of the powerful medications used to control symptoms. 

Of those 15,000 kids in Ontario, almost 30% have drug-resistant epilepsy – meaning medications aren’t able to help. 

Kids like Travis.  

Travis began having seizures at just 8 years old.   

For four years he had several per week, interrupting his daily routines and the hobbies he loved.  

A teen in a hospital bed, head shaved, trying to sleep.

At first, Travis was able to be on a medication that helped control his seizures, but when he hit puberty, his medication was not as effective. As Travis started having more frequent and more severe seizures, his team at Children’s knew something else needed to be done.  

His team discovered he was an ideal candidate for an incredible surgery called Robot-Assisted stereoelectroencephalography (SEEG). His paediatric neurosurgeon Dr. Sandrine De Ribaupierre would implant electrodes in Travis’ brain, determine where his seizures were originating and treat that specific area.  

This was his chance to have a whole new quality of life! 

Nearly five years ago, Travis underwent SEEG surgery with his Children’s Hospital team using the only available robotic arm at University Hospital. There, Dr. Sandrine de Ribaupierre successfully implanted Travis’ electrodes and nine days later completed Travis’ flawless resection!  

A teen in head bandages and glasses looks out a window overlooking hospital grounds.

For three weeks, Travis recovered at Children’s, readying himself for a new life ahead. 

Sure enough, the SEEG and resection made an incredible change in Travis’ life! 

As his parents Melissa and Tim explain, “Travis is now an amazing 19-year-old, who has been seizure-free for nearly five years. We are so grateful to the Children’s Health Foundation donors for raising funds that allow more kids like Travis to be seizure free, live and love life.”  

A teen standing in front of a quad bike with a bow on it.

In the years since Travis’ surgery, a crucial piece of epilepsy care has changed.  

In 2021, Children’s Health Foundation donors fully funded the ROSA One Brain Robotic Arm, a state-of-the-art piece of equipment, made specifically for paediatric patients. The addition of the ROSA One Brain Robotic Arm for Children’s Hospital’s Paediatric Epilepsy Program – one of only two Regional Epilepsy Surgery Centres of Excellence in Ontario – has been transformational. 

Donors like you have brought life-changing care to Children’s Hospital to protect and cure Children’s Hospital to protect and cure children with severe epilepsy.  

Now until December 31, you can continue helping to ensure better childhoods for kids like Travis by donating at participating LCBO locations across Western Ontario. Give a gift that makes a difference, today! 

Share Your Children's Story