Karen L. Skjei, M.D.

Assistant Professor, Department of Neurology

Co-Director, Epilepsy Surgery Program
Director, Epilepsy Monitoring Unit, Norton Children's Hospital

Room 113A, A Bldg., HSC (502) 852-7981

Dr. Karen Skjei is an assistant professor of Neurology and Pediatrics at the University of Louisville. She completed her undergraduate studies at Duke University, and her medical education at the University of California at San Francisco School of Medicine. She completed a residency in Pediatrics and a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Neurology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, New York. She completed a fellowship in Neurophysiology and Epilepsy at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

Dr. Skjei is a member of the American Epilepsy Society, the American Academy of Neurology, the Child Neurology Society, the American Medical Association, and the Mayo Fellows Association. She has made more than nine professional academic presentations and more than eight peer review articles at national meetings and forums, both nationally and internationally. She has been an active investigator in research programs since 1993.

Dr. Skjei has spent time as a volunteer in the Peace Corps, and helped organize the first annual Global Partners for Primary Care Initiative symposium. She has also volunteered as a medical translator for medical missions in the Dominican Republic, and is fluent in the Spanish language.



1995 - B.S. Biology and Psychology with a Certification in Neuroscience, Duke University, NC.
Graduated Magna Cum Laude and With Distinction
2005 - M.D. University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)


2005-2007 Residency in Pediatrics at the Mayo Clinic, MN
2009-2010 Instructor, Neurology, Mayo Clinic, MN
2007-2010 Fellowship in Child and Adolescent Neurology at the Mayo Clinic, MN
2010-2012 Fellowship in Clinical Neurophysiology at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, PA.

Board Certifications

American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology with Special Qualifications in Child Neurology

Clinical Interests

Pediatric epilepsy, refractory epilepsy, epilepsy surgery.

Research Interests

Dr. Skjei’s most recent research has focused on managing medically-intractable epilepsy, and understanding the pathophysiology of SCN1A mutation-associated epilepsy syndromes.

Selected Publications

Skjei KL, Harding B, Holland-Bouley K, Clancy RR, Porter B, Marsh E. Mild malformations of cortical development in patients with SCN1A mutations. Submitted.

Duman O, Uysal H, Skjei K, Kizilay F, Haspolat S, Sibel L. Sensorimotor Polyneuropathy in Patients with SMA Type-1: An Electroneuromyography Experience. Developmental Medicine and Child Neurology, 2012; submitted.

Skjei KL, Dlugos D. The Evaluation of Treatment Resistant Epilepsy. Seminars in Pediatric Neurology, 2011; 18:150-170.

Skjei KL, Kessler SK, Abend NS. SIRPIDs in a 13 year old following overdose and respiratory arrest. Pediatr Neurology, 2011 Nov; 45(5):350-1.

Skjei KL, Martin M, and Slavotinek AM. KBG syndrome: report of twins, neurological characteristics, and delineation of diagnostic criteria. American Journal of Medical Genetics, 2007 Feb; 143(3): 292-300.

Skjei KL and Markou A. Effects of repeated withdrawal episodes, nicotine dose, and duration of nicotine exposure on the severity and duration of nicotine withdrawal in rats. Psychopharmacology. 2003 Jul; 168(3): 280-92.

Cryan JF, Bruijnzeel AW, Skjei KL and Markou A. Bupropion enhances brain reward function and reverses the affective and somatic aspects of nicotine withdrawal in the rat. Psychopharmacology. 2003 Jul; 168(3): 347-58.

Skjei KL, Martin M, and Slavotinek AM. KBG Syndrome: case report of identical male twins and delineation of diagnostic criteria. American College of Medical Genetics, Annual Clinical Genetics Meeting. March 18, 2005.

Townsend TC, Cortes RA, Nobuhara KK, Skjei K, Keller RL, Harrison MR, Farmer DL and Lee H. Comparison of preterm to term infants with congenital diaphragmatic hernia: Neonatal support, early outcomes and recurrence. Amer Acad Peds Mtg., SF, October 9-13, 2004.

Contact E-Mail:

Links to relevant websites:

Epilepsy Foundation
: www.epilepsyfoundation.org
International League Against Epilepsy - ILAE
: www.ilae.org