ILAE British Branch 19th SpR Epilepsy Teaching Weekend

11-12 MAY 2024

Dr Manny Bagary

Dr Bagary graduated from St Marys Hospital/Imperial College Medical School and subsequently trained in psychiatry on the Charing Cross and Maudsley rotations in London. His neuropsychiatry and epilepsy training was spent at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, London and the Chalfont Centre for Epilepsy. He has completed academic posts at the MRC Cyclotron Unit, Royal Postgraduate Medical School/Imperial College and has a PhD in Neurological Sciences from the Institute of Neurology, University College London. Since 2005, Dr Bagary has been lead clinician for the Regional Epilepsy and Sleep Service, based at the Birmingham’s Barberry Centre, overseeing the care of a large cohort of adult patients with complex drug resistant epilepsies with a range of comorbidities.

Manny has a strong interest in novel treatments including AEDs in phase II-IV development. In 2009, he established the first UK ketogenic diet service for adults with drug resistant epilepsy and he has particular expertise in comorbid sleep disorders. Dr Bagary also has a keen interest in standards of care, and with colleagues have published guidelines and/or recommendations on the management of epilepsy in pregnancy, UK epilepsy monitoring units and ketogenic diet in adults with drug resistant epilepsy.

Dr Bagary has served as Treasurer of the ILAE British Branch since 2018 and has recently been elected President of the ILAE British Branch, taking up the role in September. He is also a member of the Council of the faculty of Neuropsychiatry for the Royal College of Psychiatrists and the regional neuropsychiatry representative for the West Midland Division of the Royal College of Psychiatrists Executive Committee. Manny chairs both the Midlands Epilepsy Forum and the Midlands Epilepsy Network. He is also the NIHR clinical research network lead for epilepsy for the West Midlands.

Prof Sallie Baxendale

Prof Baxendale has worked on the epilepsy surgery programs at the Radcliffe Infirmary, Oxford and the National Hospital for Neurology & Neurosurgery London since qualifying as a clinical psychologist in 1992. She is currently the Consultant Neuropsychologist on the epilepsy surgery program at the National Hospital for Neurology, Queen Square and has over 160 academic publications in epilepsy. Her research ranges from studies of the neural substrate of cognitive deficits in seizure disorders, to looking at ways in which the epilepsy is (mis) represented in the media and how the stigma associated with the condition can be reduced.

She serves on the editorial boards of three international journals and was elected to serve on the committee of UK ILAE Chapter in 2014.  She chairs the ILAE Diagnostic Commission – Neuropsychology Task Force and is the Course Director for the Biannual ILAE Neuropsychology of Epilepsy Training Course. She is a longstanding faculty member of the European Project for the Development of Epilepsy Surgery Programs and coordinates the neuropsychological input for these courses. She regularly lectures in the UK and abroad and has been invited to speak in over 20 countries on neuropsychological aspects of epilepsy. In 2018 she was awarded the Arthur Benton Award by the International Neuropsychological Society in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the field of neuropsychology and was elected to the board of governers of the INS in 2020.

Dr Fahmida Chowdhury

Dr Chowdhury is a Consultant Neurologist/ Neurophysiologist at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London.
She qualified from Edinburgh Medical School in 2003. She completed a MRC Funded PhD in Epilepsy in 2012 from King’s College, University of London, looking at multimodal endophenotypes (TMS, EEG, MRI) in generalised epilepsy. She trained in Clinical Neurology in London and following CCT undertook a Fellowship in Complex Epilepsy at the National Hospital. She has a special interest in Epilepsy, and in particular presurgical evaluation of medically refractory patients, including intracranial EEG recordings to localize the epileptogenic zone and map cognitive functions. She is the Clinical Lead of the Videotelemetry Unit at the NHNN.

Dr John Craig

Dr Craig is a Consultant Neurologist, based at the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Ireland. He is Clinical Director for Neurosciences for Northern Ireland.  His major research interest is in the management of epilepsy in pregnancy, in particular the effects of anti-epileptic drugs.  He is principal investigator of the UK Epilepsy and Pregnancy Register and sits on the Central Programme commission of EURAP – An International Epilepsy and Pregnancy Register.  He is an Editorial board member for Seizure – A European Journal of Epilepsy.  He has published widely in the field of epilepsy, particularly on the effects of anti-epileptic drugs in pregnancy.

Dr Beate Diehl

Dr Diehl graduated from the Ruprecht-Karls-University Medical School in Heidelberg and pursued her Neurology training at both the Universities of Mainz and Muenster in Germany.  She obtained subspecialty training in Clinical Neurophysiology and Epilepsy at the Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland USA. Subsequently, she also qualified as a Neurologist in the USA and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology and American Board of Clinical Neurophysiology. She held a faculty position at the Cleveland Clinic Epilepsy Center from August 2003 until March 2008 when she joined the National Hospital of Neurology and Neurosurgery in London as a Consultant Clinical Neurophysiologist.

Her main clinical focus is on the presurgical evaluation of intractable epilepsy patients including intracranial EEG recordings to localize the epileptogenic zone and cortical functions.  Some of Beate’s research interests include novel imaging techniques and advanced neurophysiological methods to better delineate the epileptogenic zone and investigating higher cortical functions with direct brain stimulation. Furthermore, she leads research efforts in autonomic and imaging biomarker of SUDEP. She has published extensively and holds active grant funding.

Dr Sofia Eriksson

Dr Sofia Eriksson is a consultant neurologist and honorary associate Professor at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in London specialising on epilepsy and neurological sleep disorders. She started her medical career in Göteborg, Sweden, before joining the Department of Clinical and Experimental Epilepsy (DCEE) in London in 1998 as part of her PhD. She was awarded her PhD in 2003 after which she did a post doc in the DCEE.

Her initial research focused on brain malformations and epilepsy and her current research interests focus on the relationship between epilepsy and sleep disorders, in particular NREM parasomnias.

She is the clinical lead for Epilepsy and Neurological Sleep services at the National Hospital and in her clinical practice she sees, investigates and treats patients with epilepsy as well as hypersomnolence and paroxysmal nocturnal events.

Dr Jacqueline Foong

Dr Foong is a Consultant Neuropsychiatrist at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and Honorary Associate Professor at UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology. Her qualifications include a MBBS, FRCPsych, a MPhil and a MD (Abnormalities in schizophrenia: Evidence from neuropathologically sensitive MRI techniques) both from the University of London. Dr Foong’s research interests are the neuropsychiatric aspects of epilepsy and epilepsy surgery and neuroimaging correlates of psychiatric and cognitive function in neurological disease.

Prof Khalid Hamandi

Prof Hamandi was appointed consultant neurologist at University Hospital of Wales in 2006 and Honorary Senior Lecturer, Cardiff University. He trained in neurology and epilepsy at Frenchay Hospital Bristol and the National Hospital, Queen Square, London and the National Society for Epilepsy. He gained his PhD from UCL’s Institute of Neurology on simultaneous EEG-fMRI in epilepsy. He leads the epilepsy surgery evaluation in South Wales. He also works in Cardiff University Brain Imaging Research Centre, using advanced brain imaging methods, MRI and MEG to study epilepsy.

Dr Dominic Heaney

Dr Dominic Heaney is a Consultant Neurologist at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. He has clinical responsibilities in a range of general neurological disorders, and his specialist interests include management of neurological disorders in pregnancy, and complex epilepsy.

Dr Heaney is an Honorary Senior Lecturer at the UCL Institute of Neurology and was awarded a PhD in 2002 for his work on the economic aspect of epilepsy treatment.

Dr Elaine Hughes

Dr Hughes is lead consultant for Paediatric Epilepsy based at Evelina London Children’s Hospital (part of Guys and St Thomas’ NHS Trust) and at Kings College Hospital. She is also lead for Regional Paediatric Epilepsy services in South-east London, Kent, and East Sussex, and for Regional Paediatric Epilepsy Surgery programme.

Dr Hughes is a member of CESS (Children’s Epilepsy Surgery Service) National Steering Group and National specialist advisor to Dravet UK. And established SE Thames Paediatric Epilepsy Group, now part of OPEN UK and co-founder of UK Paediatric Epilepsy Group (now BPEG) and a founder member of the BPNA PET (Paediatric Epilepsy Training) development group.

She has particular interests in early onset epilepsies, metabolic and genetic epilepsies and the interaction between epilepsy, learning and behaviour. Support joint working through multidisciplinary clinics for children with Dravet syndrome; complex epilepsy and behavioural disorders; neuro-metabolic disorders and epilepsy; and epilepsy surgery.

Dr Rebecca Liu

Dr Rebecca Liu is a Consultant Neurologist at the Royal Free Hospital where she runs specialist epilepsy clinics treating patients with newly diagnosed and chronic refractory epilepsy. She also runs an epilepsy service for patients with tuberous sclerosis.

She has an interest in functional neurological disorders and is the Functional Neurological Disorders Lead at the Royal Free Hospital. She has led the development of a new dissociative seizures pathway and runs regular dissociative seizures clinics serving the Trust and linked district general hospitals.

She is passionate about improving epilepsy care in the primary and secondary care setting. She helped to establish and run a community epilepsy service providing integrated and holistic epilepsy care and sits on the North Central London STP Steering Group committee and ABN Epilepsy Advisory Group. Research interests include the effects of seizures on the brain, and more recently, SUDEP communication and the management of dissociative seizures.

Dr Ailsa McLellan

Dr McLellan is a Consultant Paediatric Neurologist at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh. She trained in Paediatrics in Edinburgh, Cardiff and Dundee and in Paediatric Neurology in Dundee, Edinburgh, Great Ormond Street Hospital and Miami Children’s Hospital. Dr McLellan’s area of particular expertise is in Paediatric Epilepsy and she manages a tertiary level epilepsy service with outreach to hospitals in the South-East of Scotland. She manages the teenage epilepsy service, epilepsy transition services and the Ketogenic Diet service. She is lead clinician of the Scottish Paediatric Epilepsy Surgery Service. She is interested in education in epilepsy and participates widely in teaching events locally and nationally. She is involved in the development of Paediatric Epilepsy Training (PET) courses in the UK and internationally. Her research interests include epilepsy and behaviour, epilepsy and cognitive outcomes, epilepsy and sleep, aetiology of epilepsy, SUDEP and seizure detection.

Mr Andrew McEvoy

Andrew McEvoy is a world-leading Consultant Neurosurgeon at The National Hospital for Neurology (NHNN) and Neurosurgery and Institute of Neurology (ION) in London, and the Institute Chair of Neuroscience at Cleveland Clinic London. Professor McEvoy has the largest adult epilepsy surgical practice in the UK and leads the surgical arm of the Department of Clinical and Experimental Epilepsy which is the renowned, preeminent epilepsy research group in Europe.

Professor McEvoy performs all surgical therapies for the management of epilepsy such as temporal lobe resections, hemispherotomy, corpus callosotomy, vagal nerve stimulation and gamma knife surgery. He has several ongoing research interests examining the technique of EEG-FMRI, the evaluation of functional deficit following epilepsy surgery resection and imaging of the optic radiation to prevent visual field defects in temporal lobe surgery.

His primary medical qualification (MB BS) was gained at the University of London. In addition, Professor McEvoy has a Bachelor of Science Honours degree (BSc Hons) in anatomy and human anthropology and a medical doctorate (MD) investigating the effect of haemostatic changes on intracerebral haemorrhage and brain trauma. Furthermore, he is a Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of England (FRCS) and gained the specialty qualification in surgical neurology (FRCSSN).

Dr Tejal Mitchell

Dr Tejal Mitchell is a Consultant Neurologist at Peterborough City Hospital and Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge. She is also commissioned by Cambridgeshire and Peterborough CCG to be the Clinical Lead for Epilepsy for the Peterborough Epilepsy Service. In addition, she jointly delivers the regional epilepsy service at Addenbrookes Hospital, including reporting video telemetry EEG and co-organises the very successful ILAE EEG and Seizure Semiology course in Cambridge. Dr Mitchell completed a one-year Clinical EEG and Epilepsy Fellowship at Westmead Hospital, Sydney Australia in 2007 and a PhD at the Institute of Neurology, London in MRI in Epilepsy from 1999-2002.

Dr Rajiv Mohanraj

Dr Rajiv Mohanraj MBBS, PhD, FRCP is a consultant neurologist at the Manchester Centre for Clinical Neurosciences, and an honorary senior lecturer at the University of Manchester. He runs the regional specialist epilepsy clinic at GMNC and conducts a rapid access first seizure clinic. He leads the epilepsy surgery programme in Manchester. He is also a member of the regional neuro-oncology MDT and participates in paediatric epilepsy handover clinics. Dr Mohanraj has a clinical and research interest in drug resistant epilepsy. He is a principal investigator in a number of clinical trials of investigational epilepsy drugs and has published a number of peer reviewed papers and book chapters on epilepsy.

Dr Maria Oto

Dr Maria Oto is a consultant neuropsychiatrist and the lead clinician currently working at the Scottish Epilepsy Centre in Glasgow, which is the only residential centre for the assessment and management of epilepsy in Scotland.  A third of the patients referred to the centre have a learning disability. Dr Oto has been working in the field of epilepsy for most of her career; initially at the Institute of Neurology in Glasgow and thereafter at the Scottish Epilepsy Centre.

Since 2014, Dr Oto has also been part of the multi-disciplinary team based at the West of Scotland regional epilepsy surgery program as well as leading the UK network of neuropsychiatrists involved in epilepsy surgery programs. Over the years, Dr Oto has been involved with research and published widely.  In 2010 she completed a PhD on the diagnosis and management of psychogenic nonepileptic seizures which is one of her main research interests.

In 2017, she was the lead for a research project funded by the Scottish Government aiming to review the standards of epilepsy care of people with Learning Disabilities in Scotland. Dr Oto was also part of the team that reviewed the epilepsy SIGN guidelines in 2015. She is an honorary lecturer at Glasgow University, a member of the editorial board of Seizure, director of the Glasgow based charity Epilepsy Connections and chair of the Royal College of Psychiatrists epilepsy working group. Dr Oto is also a member of the ILAE British Branch Council executive, and leads the epilepsy training network for LD psychiatry trainees in Scotland.

Dr Ronit Pressler

Ronit is Consultant in Clinical Neurophysiology at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children and Associate Professor at the UCL-Institute of Child Health. Her research interests include neonatal seizures, particularly their diagnosis and treatment, as well as pre-surgical evaluation in children with complex epilepsy. She is honorary secretary of the British Society for Clinical Neurophysiology (BSCN). She has chaired a number of international task forces and working groups on neonatal EEG and neonatal seizures including the ILAE neonatal seizure classification task force and is director of the ILAE academy course ’EEG in the first year of life’.

Dr Suresh Pujar

Dr Pujar is a Consultant Paediatric Neurologist working at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, London, and Honorary Lecturer in Developmental Neurosciences, at University College London. He works in the Complex Epilepsy Service at Great Ormond Street Hospital, contributing to national Children’s Epilepsy Surgery Service, ketogenic diet, genetic epilepsies and transition to adult service. He completed PhD in Clinical Neurosciences from University College London, investigating long-term outcomes in childhood status epilepticus. He has clinical and research interest in childhood refractory and super-refractory status epilepticus and is actively engaged in drafting clinical guidelines at trust and national level. He is the regional coordinator for Thames North for Paediatric Epilepsy Training (PET) courses delivered by British Paediatric Neurology Association (BPNA), tutor and previously co-director for Infancy and Early Childhood Development MSc programme at University College London, and Deputy Unit Training Director for Neurology at Great Ormond Street Hospital. He teaches on several epilepsy courses and has contributed to developing epilepsy modules for BPNA Distance Learning Course.

Dr Sanjeev Rajakulendran

Dr Rajakulendran is a Consultant Neurologist at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and Senior Research Fellow at UCL Institute of Neurology. He trained in Neurology at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery after which he completed an Epilepsy Fellowship at King’s College Hospital. He was awarded a PhD for his work on the role of neuronal voltage-gated calcium and potassium ion channels in paroxysmal disorders of the central nervous system.

The main focus of his research is the aetiology, treatment and outcome of status epilepticus, particularly refractory and super-refractory status epilepticus. In addition, he has research interests in ‘first seizures’, the pharmacological treatment of epilepsy, the role of mitochondria in epilepsy and the relationship between seizures and systemic disorders.

Dr Fergus Rugg-Gunn

Dr Rugg-Gunn is a Consultant Neurologist and Honorary Senior Lecturer at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and UCLH NHS Hospitals NHS Trust, and the UCL/Institute of Neurology. He qualified from St Thomas’s Medical School and completed general medical training in London and Oxford. He subsequently obtained a PhD with the Epilepsy Group at The Institute of Neurology, Queen Square. Specialist training in neurology was undertaken in London and he became a Consultant Neurologist at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and the Chalfont Centre for Epilepsy in 2008. He is Clinical Lead at Chalfont, Educational Lead for the Epilepsy Dept. and Council member of the UK chapter of the ILAE. He is also a member of the Medicines Safety Committee at UCLH. Dr Rugg-Gunn holds out-patient clinics at The National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and Chalfont and is responsible for in-patients in the Sir William Gowers Assessment and Treatment Unit at Chalfont. His research interests are magnetoencephalography, advanced imaging techniques and SUDEP.

Prof Sanjay Sisodiya

Sanjay Sisodiya is Professor of Neurology at UCL Institute of Neurology and Honorary Consultant Neurologist at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and the Epilepsy Society. Professor Sisodiya studied medicine at the University of Cambridge and Guy’s Hospital and trained in Neurology in Oxford and at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery. He was awarded a PhD for working in brain magnetic resonance imaging in epilepsy. His key interests are in epilepsy, difficult-to-treat epilepsy, epilepsy genetics and treatment-response genetics, which are also his key research interests. He runs a specialist  epilepsy genomics clinic. He is the Chief Investigator of the EU-funded epilepsy pharmacogenomics project EpiPGX.

Prof Philip Smith

Professor Phil Smith trained in clinical neurology in Liverpool, Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Cardiff. After four years as consultant in Cornwall he returned to Cardiff in 1996 to develop interests in epilepsy and education. He was President of the International League Against Epilepsy UK Chapter 2008–11, and ABN President 2015–17. He sits on the NICE Guidelines Committee for Epilepsy, co-edits Practical Neurology, and is the Sub-Dean for Medical Undergraduate Assessments in Cardiff.