liv health guide

What is Epilepsy?

Oluşturma Tarihi: 29.05.2023 15:22 | Son Güncelleme: 14.07.2023 11:05

Epilepsy is a term that induces panic in anyone who hears the word. It has impacted enough people worldwide to become a feared condition to deal with.

So what is epilepsy?

Epilepsy, also known as a seizure disorder, is a neurological condition characterized by recurring seizures. It can affect people regardless of age, gender, race, and ethnic background. While the cause of epilepsy may be identified in some cases, for others, it remains unknown.
According to medical professionals in Turkey and other nations alike, the prevalence of epilepsy is concerningly significant. Seizure symptoms vary widely, ranging from a brief loss of awareness to blank staring or convulsions involving repeated twitching of the arms or legs.
It's important to note that experiencing a seizure once is not necessarily a sign of epilepsy. It is only diagnosed as one if you experience at least two seizures with no provocation of plausible cause, with a time gap of at least 24 hours in between.
Fortunately, most epilepsy patients can manage their seizures with the help of proper medication or, in some cases, with the aid of surgery. While some individuals may require lifelong treatment, others may see their seizures resolve over time, particularly in children who may outgrow the condition as they age.
Understanding epilepsy and its diverse manifestations is crucial in providing support and debunking misconceptions. With the proper guidance that medical professionals in Istanbul can equip you with, you can once and for all dispel misconceptions and minimize fear of the condition.

What Causes Epilepsy?

Epilepsy can be caused by a variety of reasons. However, approximately half of the cases have been reported as having no identifiable reason.
The other half can be attributed to several factors, including:
  • Genetic influence: Certain types of epilepsy have a familial tendency, suggesting a genetic influence. Researchers have identified specific genes linked to epilepsy, although some cases of genetic epilepsy may occur spontaneously without being inherited.
  • Head trauma: Epilepsy can be a consequence of head injuries resulting from accidents or other traumatic incidents.
  • Brain-related factors: Brain tumors and abnormal blood vessel formations, such as arteriovenous malformations and cavernous malformations, can trigger seizures. Additionally, in adults over the age of 35, epilepsy may be a result of experiencing a stroke.
  • Infections: Certain infections like meningitis, HIV, viral encephalitis, and parasitic infections have been associated with the development of epilepsy.
  • Injury before birth: Factors like maternal infections, poor nutrition, or oxygen deficiencies during fetal development can lead to brain damage, potentially resulting in epilepsy or cerebral palsy.
  • Developmental disorders: Epilepsy is more prevalent among individuals with developmental disorders like ADHD, autism, etc. Shared genetic factors might contribute to the co-occurrence of these conditions.
Understanding the diverse causes of epilepsy is crucial for accurate diagnosis and effective treatment. By recognizing the underlying factors and promoting research in these areas, skilled doctors in Istanbul can help advance your understanding of epilepsy and strive for better management and support for those affected by the condition.

How is Epilepsy Diagnosed?

To diagnose epilepsy and determine the cause of seizures, a healthcare provider conducts a comprehensive evaluation, which may include:
  • Neurological exam: This assesses behavior, motor abilities, and mental function to diagnose epilepsy and identify the specific type.
  • Blood tests: These can detect traces of infections or any other factor, such as genetic conditions, associated with seizures.
  • Genetic testing: It provides further insights into the condition and potential treatment options, particularly in children but also in some adults with epilepsy.
  • Neuropsychological tests: These assess cognitive functions, memory, and speech skills, providing insight into the brain areas affected by seizures.
  • Brain imaging tests:
Electroencephalogram (EEG): This commonly used test records the electrical activity of the brain, identifying changes in brain wave patterns associated with epilepsy. Video monitoring during the EEG can capture and document seizures.
High-density EEG: A variation of the EEG, this test places electrodes closer together to precisely determine affected areas of the brain.
CT scan: X-rays create cross-sectional brain images to detect tumors, bleeding, or cysts.
MRI: Detailed brain images are created with the help of radio waves and high-power magnets, offering a comprehensive view of potential seizure causes.
Functional MRI (fMRI): This measures changes in blood flow during brain activity, assisting in surgical planning by identifying critical functional areas to avoid damage.
PET scan: Radioactive material in low doses highlights metabolic activity, indicating areas where seizures may occur.
Single-photon emission computerized tomography (SPECT): This test visualizes blood flow activity during seizures, helping to pinpoint seizure origins in cases where other tests are inconclusive.
Accurate diagnosis is crucial for effective treatment, and understanding the type of seizure and its origin improves the chances of finding the most appropriate therapeutic approach.

Can Epilepsy be Cured?

Treatment options for epilepsy include:
  • Medication: Most people can achieve seizure control by taking anti-seizure medication. The type of seizure a person is suffering from and multiple individual factors factor into the decision of medication choice. Side effects may be mild to severe or rare.
  • Surgery: When medications fail to control seizures, surgery may be an option. Surgeons remove the specific brain area responsible for seizures, provided it doesn't affect vital functions. In certain cases, minimally invasive approaches like MRI-guided laser ablation may be advisable.
  • Therapies: Alternative therapies include vagus nerve stimulation, where a device is implanted to send electrical energy through the vagus nerve to the brain, reducing seizures. Deep brain stimulation is a procedure that involves implanting electrodes in the brain to deliver regular electrical pulses. Responsive neurostimulation devices analyze brain activity patterns and provide timely stimulation to stop seizures.
Regular follow-up appointments are necessary to evaluate treatment effectiveness. Surgery and therapies may reduce the need for medication, but some individuals may still require medication to prevent seizures.

Liv Hospital in Turkey for Epilepsy Treatments

Liv Hospital in Turkey is renowned for providing top-notch medical services to Turkish and international medical tourists alike.
With a commitment to comprehensive treatments, they aspire to be at the forefront of medical tourism destinations. Their expertise lies in multiple fields, and in the field of epilepsy, they offer personalized solutions tailored to individual needs. Liv Hospital stands out in Istanbul for its advanced technology and exceptional healthcare services. Comprising seven institutions, their motto, "Leading International Vision" (LIV), reflects their dedication to excellence.
If you are seeking affordable epilepsy diagnosis and treatment options and wish to find out the Epilepsy Treatment Prices in Turkey in 2023, do not hesitate to contact Liv Hospital.

* The Editorial Board of Liv Hospital has contributed to the publication of this content.
* The contents on our website are for informational purposes only. Please consult your physician for diagnosis and treatment. The content of this page does not include information on medicinal health care at Liv Hospital.

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