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Epilepsy: new treatments reduce side effects and improve prognosis

May 24 is it National day of epilepsy, a neurological disorder that occurs as a result of excessive discharge of brain neurons and that appears in one in four cases before the age of 12 years.

In the most typical epilepsy crises, the child suddenly loses consciousness and suffers convulsions and vibration throughout the body, but experts warn that there are different types of epilepsy and crisis, depending on the area of ​​the brain where the discharge is located.

That is why it is important to know what is possible symptoms of epilepsy to consult the doctor.

According to Dr. Ignacio Málaga, president of the Spanish Association for Pediatric Neurology (SENEP), part of the Spanish Association for Pediatrics (AEP), "it is best to take the child to the doctor when sudden, repetitive or unusual movements occur. short periods, usually seconds, of disconnection where the child does not respond to stimuli ".

Healthy habits that help prevent the onset of epileptic seizures

To reassure parents, the president of the Spanish Pediatric Neurology Association explains that "75% of epilepsy patients can control the disease if they follow medical indications and a series of recommendations that prevent epileptic attacks, such as establishing normal sleep patterns that guarantee rest. This does not mean that children with epilepsy cannot sleep one day, but it is important that they try to have normal sleep and try to sleep the recommended hours for each age.

In addition to adequate sleep and at set times, it is useful:

  • Lead a life as normal as possible, comparable to other children your age.
  • Warn the school teachers so that they know the situation and how to respond in the event of a crisis.
  • Avoid toxic substances such as alcohol.

In addition, it is very important that parents know how to act in every situation. "In the consultation they are told to be careful in the most dangerous situations in the case of a brain crisis, for example in the bathtub, the sea or the swimming pools. She is also told that Never put anything into your child's mouth if you have an attack", Dr. Ignacio Málaga explains.

The prognosis of epilepsy is hopeful

Recent studies show that in most cases the prognosis of epilepsy It is good, especially if the child has no other nervous system disease prior to the onset.

The president of SENEP explains that some types of epilepsy do not require pharmacological treatment, while for other forms of the disease the prevention of new crises must be prevented.

  • Between 50 and 90% of the children remain without a crisis, only take drugs, while between 20 and 30% of the affected children manage to manage the disease with a second treatment.

The most suitable expert is the neuropath, because there are currently more than 20 options for anti-epileptics with different mechanisms of action on the brain. According to Dr. Malaga, he explains that "the main concern of parents is the appearance of side effects and although no anti-epileptic drug is exempt, new treatments are becoming less frequent."

In the words of Dr. Malaga, "in most cases, epilepsy is a manageable disease, and in many cases, curable. With a correct diagnosis and the help of new medical progress, two thirds of the children with this disease are cured when they reach adolescence. The global prognosis is good, although there is a percentage of patients who, despite various treatments, will continue to have the disease throughout their lives. "

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