Epilepsy is a brain disorder involving repeated, spontaneous seizures of any type. How to deal with it anyway? Can it be treated?
Treatment can reduce or prevent seizures in most people who have epilepsy. This can improve quality of life. Controlling epilepsy also lowers the risk of falling and other complications that can happen when children have seizure.
Treatment that controls one kind of seizure may have no effect on other kinds. First, doctor will try to figure oout what type of epilepsy and what kinds of seizures that effect the kid. Then doctor will also consider the age, health, and lifestyle when he or she plans the treatment.
Here are some of the treatment that may use for children with epilepsy:
Medication is the first line of treatment for children with epilepsy. Medication is recommended when there is a significant likelihood that additional seizures will occur and cause potential physical, educational or social harm. The best predictor of future seizures is proper identification of seizure types and epilepsy syndrome. Caution: Keep all medications out of the reach of young children.
2. Ketogenic Diet
The ketogenic diet prompts the body to produce ketones, causing the body to use fat instead of glucose for energy. Ketogenic diets have been used for children who have epilepsy for many years. The success rate is approximately 50%. Recently, less strict versions of the ketogenic diet (a modified Atkins™ diet or a low glycemic index diet) have worked well for some patients with epilepsy. Close collaboration with an experienced dietitian familiar with the ketogenic diet and dedicated participation by the patient and family are essential for this treatment to work.
Surgery may be an option for children with epilepsy who do not respond well to medications. Diagnostic tests will help determine if the child is a good candidate for surgery. Minimally-invasive endoscopic surgery may be performed for children with a rare disorder called gelastic or laughing seizures. In this procedure, a small opening is made in the skull and a long, thin tube containing an endoscope (small camera) is threaded into the hypothalamus area of the brain. The surgeon then locates and removes the tissue causing the problem. The tissue may also be treated with stereotactic radiosurgery.
4. Vagus Nerve Stimulation
The vagus nerve reaches from the brainstem to the colon and supplies nerve fibers to the pharynx (throat), esophagus, heart, lungs and other body organs. It also returns sensory information to the brain from the tongue, ears, pharynx and larynx (voice box). Vagus nerve stimulation is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat partial seizures in patients age 12 and older. The stimulation device reduces seizure frequency and intensity in some patients. Approximately 30 to 50 percent of patients experience reduced seizure activity with vagus nerve stimulation.