Epilepsy Monitoring Unit

​​​Epilepsy is a common neurological condition that becomes evident when the brain’s electrical rhythms misfire or become imbalanced, causing seizures. Because epilepsy affects children in so many different ways and involves a wide range of seizure typ​es, symptoms and causes, a thorough evaluation is essential to an accurate diagnosis and successful treatment. 

The Boys Town Epilepsy Monitoring Unit (EMU) is one of the most technically advanced inpatient units in the region dedicated exclusively to pediatric patients, from newborns to late teens. 

Located at Boys Town National Research Hospital on the Boys Town Campus, our six-bed EMU is designed to evaluate, monitor, record and diagnose children’s seizures. Advanced EEG monitoring and diagnostic evaluations help us:

  • Identify seizure symptoms
  • Pinpoint the location of the seizures
  • Monitor seizure frequency

This information is then used by our highly trained team of specialists to develop the most appropriate treatment plan to control, stop or reduce seizure occurrence. 

Whether your child needs a diagnosis or second opinion or is experiencing changes in the frequency and intensity of seizures, our EMU care team has one goal: reducing epilepsy’s impact on the life of your loved one!   

What to Expect at the Boys Town Epilepsy Monitoring Unit

  • Your child will undergo continuous video-EEG monitoring.
    EMU monitoring is safe, painless and noninvasive. Small sensors, called electrodes, will be attached to your child’s head to record brain waves before, during and after seizures. Video will capture your child’s behaviors and movements. Together, these recordings allow us to gain critical insights into the possible causes of your child’s seizures. 
  • Boys Town physicians will see you and your child every day.
    Our team of specialists will analyze the recordings daily and share any findings with you. All collected data will be used to make an accurate diagnosis and create the most appropriate treatment plan. 
  • A parent, guardian or an adult familiar with your child’s symptoms must stay for the duration of the EEG monitoring.
    Our rooms can comfortably accommodate two parents or caregivers. Siblings are not permitted overnight. 
  • Your child may need to spend several days in the unit.
    The typical length of stay is between three and five days. This provides the necessary time to capture a more complete picture of brain activity, including how your child’s brain functions before, during and between seizures. In certain situations, a shorter stay (24 to 48 hours) is possible, depending on the child’s condition or existing diagnosis. 
  • Your child will receive gentle care and personal attention from a multidisciplinary team of neurologists, epileptologists, nurse practitioners and child life specialists. 

A Warm, Comforting Environment

Making your family’s experience comfortable, stress-free and successful is our priority. Our bright and spacious patient rooms include:   

  • Private bathrooms and showers
  • Comfy patient beds with appropriate padding and protective safeguards
  • Relaxing couches and recliners
  • In-room entertainment options, including flat-screen TVs, iPads, toys and games
  • Play area with floor mats (for young children) 

Families are welcome to bring personal comfort items or sleep aids, such as a favorite blanket or pillow, stuffed animal, pacifier, books and games. School-aged children can also bring their laptops and tablets so they can keep up with homework. 

Our child life specialists are here to assist you! They are experts at connecting with kids and involving them in activities that take away their fears and keep them relaxed and entertained.  

For dining options, you can choose from flavorful and nutritious items on our breakfast, lunch and dinner menus. A vending area with snacks and small meals (sandwiches and microwave entrees) is also available 24/7. Fast food, pizza or other favorites can be brought in.

Why Choose Boys Town

Committed. Compassionate. Safe. Welcoming.

We understand the physical and emotional toll epilepsy can have on families. That’s why we stay with you, from diagnosis through treatment and beyond, to ensure your child continues to thrive. Our child-focused, family-centered care addresses the unique needs of each patient, so all treatment options are explored, optimal care is delivered and the best outcomes are achieved. 

Our goal is your goal… to see your child thrive and enjoy life without limitations!   



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