Epilepsy is a neurological condition caused by abnormal and excessive brain cell activity, also referred to electrical activity, in the brain. It is the fourth most common neurological disorder following migraine, stroke and Alzheimer’s disease.
Epilepsy affects people of all ages, races and genders. 1 in 26 Americans will develop Epilepsy at some point in their life. It is estimated that 3 million Americans are Epileptic. That is more than autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease combined. An estimated 65 million people are affected worldwide.
A person is diagnosed with Epilepsy when they have two or more unprovoked seizures. Seizures take on many forms and can include loss of consciousness, sensory perception disruptions and abnormal behavior. The length of a seizure can range from a few seconds to a few minutes.
Years of research has yet to yield the cause or a cure for Epilepsy. While many patients experience successful treatment through medication, VNS or brain surgery, others do not.
Due to the lack of understanding by some in the medical community and most of the general public, there is a severe stigma surrounding Epilepsy. This leads to issues including; the ability to gain and/or maintain employment, a decrease in overall sense of well-being, an increase in feeling isolated, basic functionality and the enjoyment of life itself.
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