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Neurology

Epilepsy

Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological disorders affecting over 50 million people worldwide. This non-communicable brain disease occurs when neurons send wrong signals causing seizures or unusual behavior in people who have it.

Epilepsy
Epilepsy is one of the most common neurological disorders affecting over 50 million people worldwide. This non-communicable brain disease occurs when neurons send wrong signals causing seizures or unusual behavior in people who have it. Epilepsy can develop in any person, male or female, of any age.
 
Seizures occur as a result of an interruption of electrical activity in the brain, which temporarily interferes with the communication systems between brain cells and their proper function.  It is estimated that approximately 4 out of every 1000 people in the world suffer from epilepsy.

Epilepsy does not typically go away on its own. Some people have seizures during childhood that resolve in adulthood. Recurrent long-term seizures can be controlled regularly with treatment.


Causes of Epilepsy


Epilepsy has not a single cause; the condition may be could have several factors, such as:


  • Genetic influence

  • Head trauma

  • Brain conditions

  • Infectious diseases


Symptoms of Epilepsy


Signs and symptoms of seizures can include:


  • Temporary confusion

  • The way of speaking has errors and is not fluent

  • Involuntary movements of arms and legs

  • Loss of consciousness

  • Psychic symptoms: fear or anxiety.


The symptoms are different depending on the type of seizure.


Epilepsy Risk Factors


  • Age

  • Family history

  • Head wounds

  • Stroke and other vascular diseases

  • Dementia

  • Brain infections

  • Seizures in childhood


Diagnosis of Epilepsy

The Neurologist will perform a physical exam, ask questions related to your symptoms, lifestyle, medical history.

Following are some of the possible tests that could be carried out:

  • Blood test

  • Curry Analysis allows us to analyze where seizures occur.

  • Neurological examination

  • Electroencephalography (EEG) allows you to record the brain's electrical activity, which helps doctors to see if you have changes in the brain waves, even when you have not had a seizure. It can also help the doctor detect or rule out other similar conditions

  • High-density electroencephalogram is a more accurate test, allows visualizing which seizures damage areas of the brain

  • CT Scan

  • Neuropsychological tests

  • MRI - Magnetic Resonance Imaging

Treatment of Epilepsy

In most cases, the Neurologist initiates treatment with medications. If the treatment does not work on the patient, the Neurologist may choose surgery or another type of treatment.

The most common treatments for epilepsy are:

  • Seizure medications

  • Surgery

  • Vagus nerve stimulation, a device sends signals to the brain to stop seizures.

  • Sensitive neurostimulation, allows the doctor to detect seizure activity and stop it through an electric shock

  • Deep brain stimulation, regulates abnormal brain activity

  • Nutritional therapy, consuming high fat and low carbohydrate content (ketogenic diet), can improve seizure control

Living with Epilepsy

Following the treatment provided by your Neurologist and leading a healthy lifestyle could help improve quality of life.

We group the following recommendations:

  • Take medications correctly

  • Exercise daily

  • Decrease salt intake

  • Do not smoke

  • Manage stress

  • Maintain a healthy weight

  • Maintain a healthy diet

  • Get enough rest

  • Share information with family and friends about epilepsy and how they should act in the event of an attack

  • Family support is vital; understanding of common symptoms is required to react appropriately and be patient

  • Go to a mental health professional to talk about your feelings, as illness can lead to anger and stress

  • Check with your doctor about the safety measures you should have


When to see a doctor?

Contact a Neurologist if you have any of the symptoms mentioned.

Go or call the emergency room in Los Cabos +52 (624) 104 3911 for help immediately in the following cases:

  • It is the first time that you have had a seizure

  • The seizure lasts for more than 5 minutes

  • Seizure occurs right after another 

  • The person doesn't wake up

  • The person is injured, pregnant, or has diabetes

The Neurologist will take care of making a review of the medical history of the family history, neurological examinations, as well as a general physical examination.


When consulting your doctor, we recommend keeping a record of your pain with a detailed description of the symptoms, duration, and what you think triggered them. Also, mention any medications you are taking.




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