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Epilepsy and Remission

Posted Nov 09 2012 12:51pm
For those of us who have Epilepsy we know the disease can go into remission. People who don’t have epilepsy, don’t know that this disease can go into remission.

Surprising as it may be, it can and has for some of us.

Let me explain:

As a toddler of three years of age, I had a seizure; that was diagnosed as a febrile seizure (high fever), and was put on an anti-epileptic drug for a couple of years. This I only recently found out from my Mom. I knew about the seizure at age 3 but didn’t know I was on medicine for awhile.

And being young, I have no recollection of this at all.

Eventually, no more medicines and life went on. Until January 15, 1993 when I had a full blown gran mal seizure at work and ended up in the hospital, where I was treated and released.

In that moment, my life took an unexpected and drastic change.

Thinking back now over the years, I was lucky to be in remission while growing up, but often wonder all those times of “staring into space” (dreaming) was probably absent seizures. I will really never know for sure.

For example when I first started driving, one day on my way to work, I stopped at the gas station, put gas in my car and then went to work. When I returned home, Dad asked what happened to the car? I said what? Well apparently I had dented the car and didn’t recall doing so. With thinking back on it, I may have very well had a seizure and hit one of the poles when pulling into the gas station. I have no memory of this occurring, but my neurologist, thinks it was highly possible this is what happened. 

As a seizure occurs, the short term memory goes away. Even today, I don’t really remember anything after having a seizure, what I was doing, saying, etc. This is quite scary, especially if you are doing something that requires you to be alert…like driving.

How do I live with this? I just do. I have learned to take as many precautions as possible. I keep track of my triggers, my diet, my medicines…basically everything, because each person experiences a seizure differently.

Do I believe I have Epilepsy? Well I am diagnosed as having Epilepsy with gran mal and petit mal seizures. Though, my underlying belief is there is a root cause why I get the seizures from time to time. Why? Because anyone anywhere at any age can have a seizure and it not be diagnosed as Epilepsy or it can be diagnosed as Epilepsy usually after 3 seizures or more. Yes, my brain waves showed electrical activity that led to my diagnosis. However I wish the tests were taken at different times, especially when I was and was not having a period. When I had my first seizure and several more later, it was always when I had my period. It is funny how some doctors don’t listen to the patient.

I have a low seizure threshold (everyone has a seizure threshold) which makes me more sensitive to having a seizure due to my triggers, such as: sleep deprivation, decongestants, pain medicines, caffeine, aspartame, starches, carbs (bad), sugar (white refined), stress, hypoglycemia, illness (a simple cold), migraine, allergies and the list goes on.

Yes Epilepsy can go into remission at any time and come right back anytime. This is why as an epileptic, I have to maintain my health, document everything and take precautions because there are consequences when a doctor’s treatment plan and other precautions are not followed.

Currently, my Epilepsy has been going in and out of remission. In part due to hypoglycemia and the fact I have estrogen in my body, which has been a major trigger for a number of years. My doctor is currently looking at treatment plans that will better control and lessen the seizures. Fortunately for me, my seizures are not gran mal. They are partial seizures, which I recover from much more quickly than I used to. However, I still have to be careful. It is a huge responsibility living with this condition on a daily basis.
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