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Epilepsy Awareness

Written by Courteney

Posted on November 29, 2016 at 1:45 am

Epilepsy is a complex and prevalent neurological disorder marked by abnormal brain activity, recurrent seizures and other sensory disturbances. Let’s take a closer look:

  • Epilepsy is a shockingly common condition, striking approximately 1 in every 100 Americans with nearly 150,000 new diagnoses each year.
  • Anyone can develop epilepsy. The disorder can just as easily develop in elderly people as it can in children (or anywhere in between).
  • Seizures can begin after another type of medical trauma such as a stroke.
  • DO: roll a seizure victim on their side gently, try to support their head and make them comfortable, as well as monitor your vitals.
  • DON’T: Despite common misconception, never try to put something in the mouth of a seizure victim as it may make them choke or hurt their jaw or teeth.
  • Contrary to commonly held belief, it is actually impossible to swallow your tongue during a seizure.
  • People with epilepsy can hold down most steady jobs (except some that may be a safety hazard in the case of a seizure on the job, such as construction).
  • Epilepsy can’t be cured but it can be successfully treated in many cases.
  • Unfortunately, a fair number of people with the disorder do not respond to treatment and live with uncontrolled epilepsy. However, it is entirely possible with rapid medical advancements that there may be better treatment in the near future.
  • It is possible to die from an epilepsy complication called sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP).
  • Sadly, up to 42,000 people die from SUDEP each year in the United States.
  • Symptoms of epileptic seizures include: trans-like staring, abrupt jerking of the limbs, temporary loss of consciousness or awareness, repetitive movements, dizziness or light sensitivity, just to name a few.
  • The two main types of seizures are focal and generalized. Each have various subtypes.
  • The most commonly known type of seizure is a grand mal (tonic-clonic) generalized seizure.
  • If a person is having their first seizure, a seizure that lasts longer than 5 minutes or has another seizure following the first, has an additional medical condition, or appears to have been injured during the seizure call 9-1-1 immediately.

Thanks for visiting DocChat! We hope we’ve answered some of your questions about epilepsy. We hope you’ll be back again soon!

 

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