Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Faculty Profiles
Leon G Epstein, MD

Leon G Epstein, MD

Chief of Neurology in the Department of Pediatrics

Professor of Pediatrics (Neurology) and Neurology - Ken and Ruth Davee Department

Focus of Work

Academic Focus

Dr. Epstein’s research interest is the study of the impact of viral infections on the developing nervous system. Currently we are investigating the role of Human Herpesvirus 6, and 7 (HHV-6 and HHV-7) as potential causes of hippocampal injury during febrile status epilpepticus (FSE). Dr. Epstein is the site PI and the study neurovirologist for the 15 year NINDS funded multicenter longitudinal FEBSTAT study of 200 children with FSE. To date we have found that HHV-6B is the most common cause ...[Read full text]Dr. Epstein’s research interest is the study of the impact of viral infections on the developing nervous system. Currently we are investigating the role of Human Herpesvirus 6, and 7 (HHV-6 and HHV-7) as potential causes of hippocampal injury during febrile status epilpepticus (FSE). Dr. Epstein is the site PI and the study neurovirologist for the 15 year NINDS funded multicenter longitudinal FEBSTAT study of 200 children with FSE. To date we have found that HHV-6B is the most common cause of FSE in children accounting for nearly 30% of the infants that present with FSE. This longitudinal study will allow us to determine if FSE caused by HHV-6B or HHV-7 is more likely to result in mesial temporal sclerosis and temporal lobe seizures. Intractable temporal lobe seizures are the most common reason for epilepsy surgery in adolescents and young adults. If HHV-6B or HHV-7 prove to be responsible for hippocampal damage it is possible that the injury could be prevented by treatment with anti-viral or anti-infammatory medications at the time of presentation with FSE.[Shorten text]

Clinical Focus

Dr. Epstein is a child neurologist who has over 30 years experience caring for pediatric patients with complex neurologic disorder. He has worked exclusively in major pediatric academic centers seeing patients in both an inpatient and outpatient setting. He has special interest in viral infections of the nervous system, auto-immune encephalitis, and migraine headaches. He frequently sees pediatric patients for additional neurologic consultation.

Keywords


Education and Certification

  • MD: Wayne State University School of Medicine (1973)
  • Internship: Saint Joseph's Mercy, Ann Arbor, Rotating (1974)
  • Residency: University of Arizona Health Science Center, Neurology (1976)
  • Fellowship: Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, Child Neurology (1978)
  • Board Certification: Child Neurology