Brain & Nervous System
How Epilepsy Is Treated
Epilepsy is usually treated with prescription drugs to regulate seizures, yet it may additionally include surgery, nerve stimulation gadgets, or special diet regimens,
Epilepsy is usually treated with prescription drugs to regulate seizures, yet it may additionally include surgery, nerve stimulation gadgets, or special diet regimens, depending on your circumstance and exactly how well your seizures are controlled with medicine Epilepsy Is Treated. Several brand-new epilepsy treatments are on the horizon, too. Despite the therapy training course you comply with, completion goals are the same: to allow you to live your fullest life, stop seizures, and minimize the effects of managing your condition. Locating the right course for you can spend some time.
Once you’re diagnosed with epilepsy, your doctor’s initial act will likely be prescribing anti-seizure medicine (antiepileptic medicines) to regulate your seizures. Many people’s seizures can be controlled with just one drug, however some people might need more.1.
The kind and dose your physician prescribes for you will depend on numerous aspects, such as your age, the type as well as regularity of your seizures, as well as other medicines you’re taking. It can take some trial and error to find the most effective medicine and dosage with the least side effects for you.
Some negative effects may vanish after you have actually gotten on the drug for a week or two as well as your body has had an opportunity to change. If they do not lessen, or if they’re serious or annoying, talk to your medical professional right now.
With some medications, missing a dose isn’t a problem. However, missing out on also a single dose of your anti-seizure medication might cause you to lose control of your seizures.2 It’s very essential to take your medicine precisely as prescribed and speak with your medical professional if you’re having any kind of difficulties with it.
Many people are able to control their seizures with antiepileptic medicines and also, after a couple of years without any seizures, can ultimately quit taking them. Stopping your anti-seizure drug prematurely or by yourself can create severe problems, so be sure to deal with your medical professional on choosing if and when to quit treatment.
There are more than 20 different kinds of antiepileptic drugs offered, consisting of:
- Tegretol, Carbatrol (carbamazepine): Used for children and adults, carbamazepine is also used to treat pain in conditions like neuropathy and trigeminal neuralgia. Common side effects include dizziness, abnormal thinking, trouble speaking, tremor, constipation, and dry mouth.3
- Onfi (clobazam): This sedative is usually used along with other medications to treat children and adults with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or other severe forms of epilepsy. Common side effects are fatigue, coordination difficulties, drooling, appetite changes, vomiting, and constipation.4
- Keppra (levetiracetam): This is one of the more commonly used antiepileptic drugs to treat adults and children. It can be used alone or with other medications. Common side effects include weakness, coordination problems, headache, dizziness, confusion, aggressive behavior, diarrhea, constipation, excessive sleepiness, loss of appetite, double vision, and neck or joint pain.
- Dilantin (phenytoin): One of the oldest anticonvulsants, phenytoin can be used alone or with other medications for both adults and children. Common side effects are problems falling or staying asleep, increased blood sugar, abnormal eye movements, tremor, coordination problems, confusion, dizziness, headache, constipation, and gingival hypertrophy (enlargement of the gums).
- Depakote, Depakene (valproic acid): Used alone or with other medications. For children and adults, valproic acid treats absence seizures, generalized tonic-clonic seizures, and myoclonic seizures. Common side effects include drowsiness, dizziness, headache, diarrhea, constipation, appetite changes, tremors, blurry or double vision, hair loss, mood swings, and coordination problems.
- Neurontin (gabapentin): Gabapentin is used to prevent seizures, treat restless legs syndrome, and ease neuropathic pain. Common side effects are weakness; tremors; blurry or double vision; coordination problems; swelling in your hands, arms, legs, ankles, or feet; and back or joint pain.
- Phenobarbital: As one of the oldest anticonvulsants, phenobarbital is a barbiturate that’s also one of the best understood and researched medications. It’s used alone or with other medications in adults and children. Common side effects include drowsiness, headache, dizziness, increased activity, nausea, and vomiting.7
- Mysoline (primidone): Primidone is used alone or with other medications to treat epilepsy, often in children. Common side effects include clumsiness, drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, coordination problems, loss of appetite, double vision, nausea, and vomiting.
- Topamax, Trokendi XR, Qudexy XR (topiramate): Used alone or with other medications, topiramate is used to treat generalized tonic-clonic seizures and focal seizures. It’s also used along with other medications to treat seizures in people with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, as well as to prevent migraines. Common side effects include lack of appetite, weight loss, dizziness, tingling in the hands, tremors, drowsiness, and impaired concentration.
- Trileptal (oxcarbazepine): This medication is used alone or with other drugs in adults and children. Common side effects include stomach pain; nausea; vomiting; uncontrollable eye movements; sleepiness; a change in walking and balance; diarrhea; dry mouth; and problems speaking, thinking, or concentrating.
- Gabitril (tiagabine): Tiagabine is usually used to treat focal seizures in children and adults. Common side effects are dizziness, drowsiness, coordination problems, mood changes, concentration problems, and difficulty falling or staying asleep.
- Lamictal (lamotrigine): Used to treat seizures in both children and adults, lamotrigine is also used to treat bipolar disorder. Common side effects include drowsiness; coordination problems; blurry or double vision; headache; nausea; vomiting; diarrhea; constipation; appetite loss; weight loss; tremors; indigestion; weakness; rash; and stomach, back, joint, or menstrual pain.9
- Zarontin (ethosuximide): This medication is used to treat absence seizures in children and adults. Common side effects include nausea, diarrhea, appetite loss, weight loss, hiccups, drowsiness, dizziness, headache, and concentration difficulties.10
- Zonegran (zonisamide): Zonisamide is used with other medications to control seizures. Common side effects are nausea, weight loss, diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, dry mouth, headache, dizziness, confusion, fatigue, and double vision.11
- Klonopin (clonazepam): Belonging to the benzodiazepines class of drugs, clonazepam is a sedative used alone or with other medications to treat seizures. Common side effects are drowsiness, dizziness, slurred speech, coordination problems, blurry vision, urinary retention, and sexual issues.12
- Briviact (brivaracetam): This is a newer medication that was approved in 2016 to treat focal seizures, usually along with other medications. Common side effects include dizziness, gait imbalance, sleepiness, nausea, and vomiting.
- Aptiom (eslicarbazepine): This medication is also used along with other medications to treat focal seizures. Common side effects are blurry or double vision, dizziness, sleepiness, fatigue, sluggishness, and balance difficulties.
- Fycompa (perampanel): Perampanel is used for children and adults who are 12 years or older alone or with other medications for focal seizures and as an additional medication for people with generalized tonic-clonic seizures. Common side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, headache, nausea, constipation, vomiting, and balance problems.13
- Epidiolex (cannabidiol): In 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the use of Epidiolex, a cannabis-based oil also known as CBD, to treat the severe seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Dravet syndrome in patients who are 2 years or older. It’s taken orally and doesn’t contain tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the chemical that causes a high. This is the first FDA-approved drug that’s derived from cannabis (marijuana). When used along with other medications in studies, Epidiolex was shown to help reduce the frequency of seizures in patients with these two syndromes, which are notoriously difficult to control. Common side effects include drowsiness and lethargy, an elevation in liver enzymes, decreased appetite, diarrhea, rash, fatigue, weakness, sleep difficulties, and infections.
In the United States, nine out of 10 prescriptions are filled with common drugs. Nonetheless, generic antiepileptic drugs are connected with some issues.
Although they contain the exact same active component as trademark name, the inactive ingredients in generics may greatly differ between brand names. The amount of medication that your body absorbs might additionally vary. Also, while unusual, it’s possible to be allergic to a particular non-active component.
In order for generics to be approved by the FDA, they have to be between 80 percent and 125 percent as effective as the trademark name. For some people with epilepsy, this variation can cause development seizures or increased adverse effects when switching over brands.
The Epilepsy Foundation recommends caution when changing from brand to generic medicines or changing in between common brands. For individuals with difficult-to-control seizures, generic variations probably aren’t a good suggestion. Nevertheless, if your seizures are generally well-controlled, a generic will likely be secure; just see to it that you speak to your pharmacologist regarding getting your medicine from the exact same supplier whenever.
Constantly speak with your doctor before making the dive to an additional brand or manufacturer. He or she might examine the medicine level in your blood before and after you switch over to see to it you’re getting a restorative dosage and, otherwise, change your dosage or place you back on the brand name. Our Doctor Conversation Overview listed below can assist you begin that discussion.
In around 30 percent of people with epilepsy, two or more drugs, with each other or independently, fall short to manage seizures.15 That’s referred to as drug-resistant or refractory epilepsy. If you’re in this subgroup, your doctor may bring up surgery.
Surgery is advised when you have a brain sore, lump, or mass that’s triggering your seizures, in addition to when you have focal seizures (only occurring in one part of your brain) that aren’t managed with medicines.
The right surgical treatment for you will certainly depend on what kind of epilepsy you have in addition to the results of your pre-surgical examination and testing. This examination as well as screening assists your physician situate the beginnings of your seizures and also see just how surgical procedure may affect your everyday activities.
Examining may consist of electroencephalograms (EEGs), imaging examinations to check for tumors or abscesses, and also practical neurological screening to ensure that the surgical treatment will not influence abilities such as speaking and also checking out.
Surgery constantly has dangers, so these must be evaluated along with the advantages. For many people, surgical procedure can substantially decrease or perhaps quit seizures, but in others, it does not help. Threats consist of modifications in your individuality or your capability to believe, though these aren’t usual.
If you do have surgical procedure, even if you’re seizure-free, you’ll still need to take anti-epileptics generally for at the very least one year. Surgery may additionally make it feasible for you to take less medicines and/or reduce your dosage, however.
Four sorts of surgical procedure are made use of to treat epilepsy.
This is the most usual type of epilepsy surgery and it is available in two kinds: temporal and also frontal. Lobectomy is just for focal seizures, implying that they start in a local area of the brain.
– Part of the temporal wattle is eliminated.
– High success rate.
– Numerous patients have fewer seizures or become seizure-free.
– If medicine is still needed, it’s typically a reduced dosage.
– Part of the frontal lobe is eliminated.
– Reduced success price than temporal lobectomy.
– Most have much better seizure control after surgery.
– Some come to be seizure-free.
Multiple Subpial Transection
When your seizures begin in a location of the mind that can’t be taken out, you may have multiple subpial transections.
– Entails superficial cuts in the cortex.
– Can lessen or stop seizures while maintaining capacities intact.
– Temporarily successful for Landau-Kleffner disorder (a rare type of epilepsy).
The brain is comprised of a left as well as appropriate hemisphere. The corpus callosum links and facilitates communication in between them. Nevertheless, the corpus callosum isn’t required to survive.
In a corpus callosotomy:.
– Corpus callosum is cut either two-thirds of the means or entirely.
– Lessens or stops communication in between hemispheres.
– Specific types of seizures can be stopped, other kinds end up being much less regular.
This surgical procedure is mostly carried out in youngsters whose seizures begin on one side of the brain and also spread to the various other. Typically, your doctor will cut the front two-thirds initially and only sever it complete if that doesn’t lower the frequency of seizures.
Negative effects include:.
– Inability to call familiar things seen on the left side of your visual field.
– Unusual hand syndrome (loss of ability to identify and also knowingly control a part of your body, such as your hand) 16.
Though this surgical procedure can significantly decrease the frequency of seizures, it does not stop the seizures in the hemisphere in which they start, as well as focal seizures might be even worse later.
Hemispherectomy is just one of the earliest surgical strategies for epilepsy. It entails:.
– Separating areas of the brain.
– Eliminating cells.
In the past, most or all of the hemisphere was eliminated, but the treatment has advanced over time.
This surgical procedure is typically used for youngsters, but it can be helpful for some adults, also. A hemispherectomy is only done if:.
– Your seizures involve just one side of your mind.
– They’re serious.
– That hemisphere isn’t functioning well as a result of damage from injury or seizures, such as that associated with Rasmussen’s sleeping sickness.
Both most typical types of hemispherectomy consist of:.
– Anatomical: In this treatment, the frontal, parietal, temporal, as well as occipital wattles are removed from the hemisphere that’s creating seizures while leaving the brain stem, basal ganglia, as well as thalamus intact. It’s one of the most severe kind and might create some loss of abilities, however individuals that have this surgical treatment are frequently able to operate well.
– Functional: This procedure entails removing a smaller sized area from the hemisphere in charge of seizures as well as disconnecting the corpus callosum.
Both kinds result in 70 percent of individuals becoming totally seizure-free. For individuals who still have seizures after surgical treatment, antiepileptic medicine may be required, but the dosage might be lower.
Seizures seldom get worse hereafter surgical procedure. Often, a repeat hemispherectomy is needed, as well as the outcome for this is also normally great.
If surgical procedure isn’t a choice for you or you simply wish to attempt various other alternatives initially, you have a few other therapies to take into consideration. These specialist-driven therapies are all adjunctive treatments, implying that they are additions to medication therapies– not substitutes for them.
Vagus Nerve Stimulation
Vagus nerve excitement, likewise called VNS treatment, is FDA-approved to treat seizures in adults and also children over 4 years of ages whose seizures aren’t regulated after trying a minimum of two medications.
Similar to a pacemaker, a vagus nerve stimulant is a little device that’s dental implanted under the skin on your chest, as well as a cable runs to the vagus nerve in your neck. It’s uncertain specifically how it functions, however the stimulator delivers normal electric pulses through the vagus nerve to your mind, reducing the seriousness and also frequency of seizures. This may result in requiring less drug.
VNS treatment, typically:.
– Minimizes seizures by 20 percent to 40 percent.
– Improves lifestyle.
– Tends to expand extra effective gradually.
One evaluation found that within four months after implantation:.
– 49 percent of individuals had a 50 percent or greater decrease in seizure frequency.
– Around 5 percent came to be seizure-free.
The exact same testimonial likewise reported that around 60 percent were doing equally as well 24– 48 months later on, with around 8 percent attaining seizure freedom.
Responsive neurostimulation resembles a pacemaker for your brain. It constantly keeps an eye on brain waves, assesses patterns to identify activity that may bring about a seizure. Then, it reacts with electric excitement that returns brainwaves to normal, stopping the seizure.
The gadget is gotten used to your individual demands, put within your skull, and linked to a couple of electrodes on your brain.
This treatment is for people whose seizures aren’t controlled after trying at the very least two drugs. It’s FDA-approved for adults with focal epilepsy and also, just like VNS therapy, the results seem to get better in time.
Deep Brain Stimulation
In deep brain stimulation (DBS), electrodes are placed in a specific part of your mind, often the thalamus. They’re connected to a device that’s implanted under the skin in your breast that sends out electric impulses to your mind. This can lessen or perhaps stop seizures.
The FDA has actually authorized this therapy for adults with focal epilepsy that isn’t regulated after attempting 3 or more medicines.
These effects likewise appear to raise with time. In one research:.
– After a year of DBS, 43 percent of participants reported a half or even more decrease in seizures.
– After 5 years, 68 percent reported the very same decline.
– Within those 5 years, 16 percent went six months or even more with no seizures.
– Lifestyle reports additionally boosted in time.
Dietary changes might help in the administration of your condition but should never be thought about a single treatment option. These need to only be considered with your doctor’s input as well as surveillance, in addition to the aid of a dietitian.
The ketogenic diet plan is typically recommended in cases where seizures aren’t replying to two or more medicines, especially in youngsters. This high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet regimen is stringent and can be difficult to adhere to. It’s specifically helpful for certain epilepsy syndromes and makes it possible for some individuals to take reduced doses of medications.
The Ketogenic Diet Regimen as well as Epilepsy.
– Majority of kids that go on the ketogenic diet see a half or higher reduction in seizures.
– In grownups, this diet lowers seizures by 50 percent or even more in between 22 percent as well as 70 percent of individuals, and also by 90 percent or even more in as much as 52 percent of clients.
– A little portion of both youngsters and also adults may become seizure-free after several years on a very closely managed ketogenic diet regimen.
Prospective negative effects include:.
– Stunted growth in youngsters because of nutritional deficiencies.
– Bowel irregularity.
– Higher cholesterol in adults17.
If you select the ketogenic diet, you’ll possibly require to take nutritional supplements to make up for the diet plan’s inequalities. This diet plan needs to just constantly be medically managed.
Modified Atkins Diet
The modified Atkins diet regimen (MAD) is a less limiting and newer variation of the ketogenic diet that can be used for both adults and also kids.
While the foods are similar to the ketogenic diet plan, liquids, proteins, as well as calories aren’t limited as well as there’s more flexibility when it pertains to dining in restaurants. The MAD motivates less carbohydrates as well as even more fat than the basic Atkins diet.
This diet appears to have comparable outcomes to the traditional ketogenic diet regimen. Researches show:.
– Seizures are lowered by half or more in between 12 percent and also 67 percent of adults.
– Up to 67 percent of adults have 90 percent or far better seizure reduction.
Possible negative effects include weight loss, greater cholesterol in grownups, and also feeling ill, especially at first.
Low Glycemic Index Diet
Another less limiting version of the ketogenic diet plan, the low glycemic index treatment (LGIT) concentrates extra on carbohydrates that have a reduced glycemic index. It doesn’t limit liquids or healthy protein, and also food is based upon portion dimensions as opposed to weights.
There have not been several high-grade researches done on the impacts of LGIT, but it seems to be advantageous in lowering seizures.
Some study shows that the rate of celiac illness (an autoimmune problem that triggers gluten sensitivity) is dramatically more usual in people with epilepsy than in the general public. This has resulted in conjecture that gluten might have a role in creating or adding to the development of seizures.
A 2013 British research discovering the price of neurological disorders in individuals with gastric condition located that 4 percent had actually epilepsy, compared to 1 percent in the basic populace. Various other studies have actually verified rates varying from 4 percent to 6 percent.
Still, it’s tough to develop a link between gluten sensitivity as well as seizures due to the fact that presently there’s no typical measure of gluten sensitivity outside of gastric condition.
While this is a location with little study, you can discover great deals of narratives concerning people that claim they’ve stopped having seizures after going gluten free. Claims are especially widespread when it concerns youngsters, with some individuals announcing the diet regimen much more reliable than medications.
It’s tempting to think these kinds of success tales, but it pays to remember that seizure regularity typically reduces with time, as well as very early youth epilepsy usually vanishes on its own.
Until even more study is available, the influence of a gluten-free diet regimen on epilepsy remains speculative. If you determine to attempt this diet regimen, ensure to review it with your physician to make sure you’re not harming on your own by getting rid of important nutrients, which could aggravate your epilepsy.
Taking on healthy habits might aid manage your epilepsy, also.
Get Enough Sleep
Sleep starvation can set off seizures in some people, so make certain you obtain enough. If you have trouble getting to sleep or awaken commonly, speak with your doctor. You can additionally try to:.
– Restriction caffeine after lunch, remove it after 5 p.m.
– Shut off digital gadgets with blue light an hour prior to bed.
– Produce a nightly going to bed routine.
– Offer yourself at least an eight-hour window to sleep.
– Make your area as dark as feasible; consider room-darkening shades or blinds.
– Keep your bed room cool.
– Avoid alcohol before bed.
– Try not to nap.
– Get up at the same time every early morning.
Anxiety is an additional prospective trigger for seizures.18 If you’re under excessive tension, try entrusting some obligations to others.
Learn leisure strategies such as deep breathing, reflection, as well as dynamic muscle mass leisure. Take time out for activities you appreciate and find leisure activities that help you loosen up.
Besides helping you stay physically healthy and balanced, workout can also assist you rest better, enhance mood as well as self-worth, lower stress and anxiety, soothe stress, as well as fend off clinical depression.
Don’t work out also close to bedtime, though, or you might have difficulty drifting off.
Take Your Medications
Make certain to take your medicines precisely as prescribed so you can achieve the best seizure control feasible. Don’t ever alter your dosage or quit taking your medicine without consulting your physician.
Relying on your epilepsy type, you might at some point go without seizures for long enough that you can try going off your meds. This must just be performed with your medical professional’s permission as well as guidance.
Using a clinical alert bracelet that notes your medicines is very important when you have epilepsy so that, in an emergency situation, medical personnel understand better just how to help you. You can buy one online or at some local pharmacies and also medicine stores.
There are some complementary and also natural medicine (WEBCAM) therapies that you may intend to take into consideration consisting of along with (not in place of) your normal treatments.
Studies on the relationship of music to seizures recommend that consistently paying attention to Mozart, particularly Mozart’s Sonata for 2 Pianos in D Major (K448), helps in reducing seizures and also EEG irregularities in kids. This is called the Mozart Result.
One study of both children and adults that listened to Mozart K448 for 10 mins, 3 times a week for three months revealed that the effect was 25 percent a lot more widespread in youngsters. However, both teams had less EEG abnormalities as well as decreased seizures.
No person recognizes what the relationship is in between the music and also the reduction in seizure activity, and much more research study is needed to verify this impact altogether.
A Cochrane evaluation on yoga for epilepsy concluded that it may be valuable in controlling seizures, yet there isn’t enough evidence to recommend it as a treatment.
Yoga exercise should only be used in addition to your routine therapies, never ever on its own. A fringe benefit is that yoga can help you take care of tension.
Additionally known as neurofeedback, biofeedback is a strategy that permits you to determine your body’s actions to seizure triggers (among other points). With time, you can utilize this info to help manage automatic features such as your heart rate and respiration, possibly reducing the frequency of seizures.
Psychophysiological feedback uses sensing units affixed to your body, so it’s non-invasive. It also has no negative effects.
Several tiny researches have actually shown that it does help in reducing seizures. This seems to be especially real with psychophysiological feedback using galvanic skin action (GSR), which measures the quantity of sweat in your hands. Still, even more studies need to be done.
Some proof recommends that putting on sunglasses with blue-tinted lenses may help people with photosensitive epilepsy, but the study is minimal as well as out of date.
Blue-tinted lenses have not been authorized by the FDA for the treatment of seizures, but there’s no injury in trying them, as long as you do not stop routine treatments. The Zeiss Z-1 lenses mentioned in a popularly-cited 2004 research study need to be bought from outside the United States, but you can get TheraSpecs fluorescent light glasses online. They’re not blue-tinted, however they obstruct green light.
Epilepsy can have a marginalizing effect that may lead to feelings of sadness as well as low self-esteem. Preliminary research study suggests that a multi-week art treatment program called Studio E: The Epilepsy Art Treatment Program might assist increase self-worth in people with epilepsy.
Amongst the 67 people who signed up in the pilot research, the program appeared to enhance self-confidence as measured by the Rosenberg Self-worth Range (RSES). The drop-out rate was reduced, too.
The Future of Treatment
A great deal of work is being performed in the quest for much less invasive and also a lot more efficient epilepsy treatments, consisting of a couple of points that are still in experimental phases.
Stereotactic radiosurgery, or stereotactic laser ablation, may help individuals that:
– Have focal seizures
– Don’t respond well to medications
– Aren’t great surgical treatment prospects
Throughout the procedure, targeted radiation ruins tissue in the part of the brain that creates seizures. Initial evidence reveals that it’s effective for controlling seizures in mesial temporal lobe, the most common kind of focal epilepsy.
Also known as laser interstitial thermal treatment or LITT treatment, thermal ablation is a sophisticated form of stereotactic radiosurgery that makes use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to situate the cells to be destroyed. It’s far more exact and has fewer threats than standard surgical procedure.
Research studies have actually been limited and little, but MRI-guided LITT appears like a promising therapy with fewer adverse effects and better outcomes than various other minimally intrusive treatments.
External Nerve Stimulation
Exterior trigeminal nerve stimulation (eTNS) resembles vagus nerve stimulation, but the tool is put on the surface instead of implanted.
One certain gadget, the Majesty eTNS System, has been accepted in Europe and Canada and also is being researched in the USA.
A 2015 study ended that long-lasting evidence revealed the therapy was safe as well as a “encouraging lasting therapy” for individuals whose epilepsy isn’t well controlled by medications.
A 2017 audit of the treatment in Britain located that people without intellectual specials needs had a substantial enhancement in both lifestyle and also state of mind, along with an 11 percent decline in seizures. The writers proclaimed it safe as well as flexible however likewise specified the need for additional controlled research studies to confirm its performance.
Subthreshold Cortical Stimulation
Subthreshold cortical stimulation utilizes electrodes connected to a generator. As opposed to waiting until your brain shows unusual activity, it stops seizures by supplying constant excitement to the accurate area of your brain in which seizures begin.
In one study 10 out of 13 participants that had the therapy claimed their epilepsy came to be less severe. The majority of them additionally had at the very least a 50 percent reduction in seizure regularity. This therapy may be particularly helpful for people with focal epilepsy that aren’t prospects for surgical procedure.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What can cause a breakthrough seizure?
How do anti-seizure medications work?
These medications reduce the abnormal electrical activity in the brain that causes seizures. They may do this in different ways. Some change how neurotransmitters, or brain chemicals, send messages. Others affect how ions move in and out of brain cells, affecting electrical activity.20
When can you stop taking epilespy medicine?
Don’t stop taking your medication without talking with your doctor. Stopping medication suddenly can cause dangerous side effects and trigger seizures. Your doctor may consider slowly tapering your medication and eventually stopping it if you’ve had a seizure-free period for two to four years. They’ll also take into consideration the number of seizures you had before the medication and the results from a neurological exam.21
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