December 6, 2022

First Washington News

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13 myths about epilepsy

According to the Facilities for Disease Control and Avoidance (CDC), epilepsy has an effect on an estimated 1.2% of individuals in the United States. That equates to close to 3.4 million folks.

Globally, the Entire world Well being Firm (WHO) estimates that epilepsy affects all-around 50 million people today. Of these, some 80% dwell in lower- or middle-profits countries.

The key symptom for most individuals with epilepsy is seizures. These are surges of electrical activity in the brain. Where in the brain these seizures take place can alter how they affect the relaxation of the human body.

Past running seizures, persons with epilepsy often have to deal with stigma. As the authors of 1 study produce:

“The stigmatizing nature of epilepsy and its associated psychological distress have been noted to have a substantial effect on the high quality of lifetime of people today with epilepsy.”

One particular way of cutting down stigma is to arm people today with the points about epilepsy. Below, we tackle 13 epilepsy myths. To assistance us, we have recruited the perception of Dr. Clifford Segil, a neurologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Centre in Santa Monica, CA.

While epilepsy is most likely the most perfectly-recognised seizure issue, it is not the only a single. Epilepsy is brought on by abnormal electrical activity in the mind, while other problems might have unique mechanisms.

For instance, reduced blood sugar or issues with the way the coronary heart features can lead to non-epileptic seizures.

The most frequent type of non-epileptic seizures is dissociative seizures, or psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES).

PNES have an association with a selection of factors, which includes mental health situations and psychological trauma. It is value noting that an approximated 10% of individuals with PNES also have epileptic seizures.

This is a fantasy. As Dr. Segil advised Medical Information Currently, men and women with epilepsy or who have seizures “can perform when their seizures are managed by medication.”

He also told us that he has “known fellow medical professionals with epilepsy.”

“There are only a couple of circumstances where having a seizure condition disqualifies folks from operating, and these incorporate becoming a pilot and truck driver.”

This is an previous fantasy that is nevertheless common, specially in some sections of the globe, but it has no foundation in truth — epilepsy is not contagious.

On the other hand, while professionals know that epilepsy are not able to transmit from man or woman to human being, identifying the lead to is complicated. In accordance to the WHO, “the bring about of the sickness is nevertheless unfamiliar in about 50% of cases globally.”

The subsequent are some of the opportunity triggers of epilepsy:

There is a sizeable amount of stigma attached to epilepsy. Section of this stigma features the idea that people today with the situation are more probable to be “emotionally unstable.” This is not legitimate.

“Patients with epilepsy are not emotionally unstable,” Dr. Segil instructed MNT.

“It is unsettling to have a seizure disorder and know a seizure can strike any time, but most epilepsy individuals are content [and] most epilepsy cases are very easily managed working with monotherapy, or one seizure treatment.”

Associated to the fantasy above, this is also untrue — epilepsy is not a psychological disease. As the Epilepsy Foundation writes:

“[T]he large majority of people living with epilepsy have no cognitive or psychological challenges. For the most section, psychological concerns in epilepsy are constrained to persons with significant and uncontrolled epilepsy.”

Not every person with epilepsy loses consciousness and convulses through a seizure. According to the Epilepsy Modern society:

“Not all seizures contain jerking or shaking movements. […] There are about 40 diverse sorts of seizures. What seizures glimpse like can change. For instance, a person could go ‘blank’ for a few of seconds, [or] they may well wander all-around and be rather bewildered.”

This is a hazardous myth. As the CDC clarify, “This can injure enamel or the jaw.”

This is a further widespread fantasy. “Most seizures last for 30–90 seconds, and there is no explanation to restrain a affected individual with a seizure,” spelled out Dr. Segil.

“A hallmark symptom of an epileptiform seizure is that it is not suppressible, which implies they really do not stop when you hold a man or woman down.”

Nonetheless, he described that it “is sensible to lay somebody on their aspect.” He also suggested that filming the seizure with a cell cell phone could aid a medical professional modify the individual’s seizure care.

Soreness through a seizure, or ictal soreness, is scarce. In 1 review, just .9% of 5,133 individuals who frequented the Jefferson Detailed Epilepsy Center in Philadelphia, PA seasoned ictal suffering.

Even so, some individuals may well knowledge agony just after a seizure. This may possibly be thanks to a slide or damage throughout the seizure or mainly because of extended muscle contractions.

Some folks can working experience a headache ahead of, for the duration of, or immediately after a seizure.

Only individuals with photosensitive epilepsy are at possibility of seizure when viewing strobing lights.

Photosensitive epilepsy accounts for just 5% of epilepsy circumstances. For these men and women, it is not only strobe lighting that can bring about a seizure. Other visible stimuli, these types of as shifting patterns and styles, may well also induce them.

Even though this is not real, Dr. Segil described to MNT that physicians consider pregnancies in people today with seizures large risk. This signifies that they will see their obstetrician a couple much more periods than individuals with no a seizure dysfunction.

“They are also adopted additional intently by their neurologists through this period,” he defined.

“Some seizure medicines are not harmless to be utilized while expecting, but in 2021 there are numerous much more medicines that are protected for the two the mom and developing baby.”

This is a myth that extends past epilepsy. In actuality, it is not achievable to swallow one’s tongue beneath any circumstances.

In the course of a seizure, even so, it is doable that the personal could possibly crack or or else damage their enamel. They may also chunk their lips or tongue.

Thankfully, this is an additional myth. There is no get rid of for epilepsy, but a range of treatment plans are available to help.

For a lot of people, anti-epileptic medication effectively avoid seizures. According to the Epilepsy Culture, an believed 7 in 10 men and women with epilepsy could quit getting seizures once they are on the ideal medication.

For individuals who do not reply to drugs, other options consist of medical procedures, vagus nerve stimulation, and even nutritional interventions that can enable.

As scientists continue to review, they go ever nearer to a cure for epilepsy. While it may possibly be some time absent, the function is ongoing.

Obtain information and facts on 1st support for seizures here.

Soon after finishing a bachelor’s degree in neuroscience at the U.K.’s College of Manchester, Tim improved training course solely to operate in sales, internet marketing, and evaluation. Noticing that his coronary heart definitely lies with science and crafting, he transformed system after extra and joined the Healthcare Information Right now team as a News Author. Now Senior Editor for news, Tim sales opportunities a staff of best notch writers and editors, who report on the newest health-related research from peer reviewed journals he also pens a number of articles or blog posts himself. When he will get the opportunity, he enjoys listening to the heaviest steel, seeing the birds in his yard, pondering about dinosaurs, and wrestling with his little ones.

You can abide by Tim on Twitter.