Facts about Epilepsy

  • Over a lifetime, one in 26 people will be diagnosed with it.
  • Epilepsy is a neurological disorder caused by unusual nerve cell activity in the brain.
  • 65 MILLION: Number of people around the world who have epilepsy.
  • NEARLY 3 MILLION: Number of people in the United States who have epilepsy.
  • 6 OUT OF 10: Number of people with epilepsy where the cause is unknown.

Research scope in Epilepsy

  • Human mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) family members JNK and p38 are two homologous protein-serine/threonine kinases but play distinct roles in the pathological process of neurological disorders. Selective targeting of JNK over p38 has been established as a potential therapeutic approach to epilepsy and other nervous system diseases...more
  • Epilepsy is a major risk factor for autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and complicates clinical manifestations and management of ASD significantly. Tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC), caused by TSC1 or TSC2 mutations, is one of the medical conditions most commonly associated with ASD and has become an important model to examine molecular pathways associated with ASD….more
  • Mutations in the SLC13A5 gene that codes for the Na+/citrate cotransporter, NaCT, are associated with early onset epilepsy, developmental delay and tooth dysplasia in children....more
  • Saikosaponin a (SSa), which is one major bioactive compound isolated from radix bupleuri, has been demonstrated to exhibit the properties of anticonvulsant and antiepileptic in few reports...more
  • The study demonstrated the reduction of Kv4.2 expression might contribute to the development of post-ischemic seizures and long-term increased seizure susceptibility after ischemia. The mechanisms underlying post-stroke seizures and epilepsy is unknown so far. The down-regulation of IA channels may explained the abnormal neuronal hyperexcitability responsible for the seizure development after ischemic stroke...more

Treatment for Epilepsy

  • Brivaracetam: new compound approved for the treatment of epilepsy...more
  • Ezogabine, clobazam, and perampanel are among the newest antiseizure drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration between 2011 and 2012.more
  • Treatment options for pregnant women with epilepsy....more
  • Overview of treatment guidelines for epilepsy...more
  • Review of treatment options for refractory epilepsy: new medications and vagal nerve stimulation...more
  • Non-pharmacological treatment options for epilepsy....more
  • Dietary approaches to epilepsy treatment: old and new options on the menu...more
  • The ketogenic diet can be considered an option for children with intractable epilepsy who use multiple antiepileptic drugs...more

Prevention of Epilepsy

  • Pretreatment with curcumin ameliorates seizures, oxidative stress and cognitive impairment in PTZ induced kindling in rats...more
  • The study found that seizure numbers significantly decreased upon vitamin D3 supplementation. Median seizure reduction was 40%. We conclude that the normalization of serum vitamin 25(OH)D level has an anticonvulsant effect...more
  • The study suggest that ginseng may play a neuroprotective role in perturbed homeostasis of [Ca2+]i and neuronal cell death via the inhibition of NMDA receptor-induced SE or SREDs...more
  • Hydroethanolic extract of ginger has anticonvulsant effects, possibly through an interaction with inhibitory and excitatory system, antioxidant mechanisms, oxidative stress and calcium channel inhibition...more
  • Study suggest that vitamin C together with progesterone and/or its metabolites are involved in the protection against PTZ-induced seizures in immature rats...more
  • The dose of oral MgO appears to have an inverse relation with the protective effect in MES-induced seizure model. High doses of MgO supplementation given orally appear to enhance the activity of standard anti-epileptic drugs in the MES-induced seizure model...more

Risk factors for Epilepsy

  • Positive family history of epilepsy and residence in rural areas were the two major risk factors associated with epilepsy...more
  • Modifiable factors such as newborn distress and significant head trauma are significant risk factors for childhood epilepsy. Newborn distress is a risk factor for early-onset (<1 year age) epilepsy...more
  • Febrile convulsions, family history of epilepsy, serious maternal illness during pregnancy, a history of head trauma, antenatal/postnatal problems, and a history of neonatal jaundice were statistically significantly related to the development of epilepsy...more
  • Low SES (Socioeconomic status) indexed by low education or lack of home ownership, is a risk factor for epilepsy in adults, but not in children, suggesting a cumulative effect of SES on risk for epilepsy...more
  • DTaP-IPV-Hib vaccination was associated with an increased risk of febrile seizures on the day of the first 2 vaccinations given at 3 and 5 months, although the absolute risk was small. Vaccination with DTaP-IPV-Hib was not associated with an increased risk of epilepsy...more
  • Mutations in POLG are increasingly recognized as a cause of refractory occipital lobe epilepsy (OLE) and status epilepticus (SE)....more
  • Nearly half of people with epilepsy are also vitamin D deficient,i but despite this well-known association, only a single study has been published on the effect of vitamin D for seizure control in the last 40 years...more
  • Tapeworm parasites in the brain give epilepsy. Traces of pork tapeworm that end up in the human brain can cause epilepsy, but both the parasite and its complications in the form of disease can be fought...more
  • Cerebellar disturbances were associated with lower concentrations of folate, of vitamin C or D, and possibly of biotin. The incidence of gingival hyperplasia could be linked to riboflavin, to biotin, and possibly also to vitamin C, D, or folate status....more

Systematic reviews

  • The ketogenic diet is efficacious in reducing seizure frequency in children with refractory epilepsy…more
  • Perampanel is a first-in-class antiepileptic drug approved for adjunctive treatment of partial-onset seizure in patients aged 12 years or older...more
  • Treatment decisions are largely dependent on expert opinion because a standardized approach for treating seizures in the terminal stage of brain tumor patients is still lacking…more
  • In adults with drug-refractory focal epilepsy, add-on BRV (Brivaracetam) was effective to reduce seizure frequency and fairly well-tolerated...more
  • Use of AEDs such as CBZ, PHT, and VPA, was associated with alteration of thyroid hormones among patients with epilepsy...more

Treatment with Medicinal Herbs

  • Common Daffodil (Narcissus pseudonarcissus) – Dose – 1/4 – 10 drops tincture (bulb macerated in 98% ethanol; 10-60 grains powdered flower or bulb
  • Conessi, Kurchi (Holarrhena pubescens Wall) – Dose – 2-4 g powdered seed; 28-74 ml decoction or tea; 2-4 ml tincture; daily dose of 60-120 grains powered bark in 3-4 portions; bark taken in decoction  
  • Lady’s Slipper (Cypripedium spp.) – Dose – 2-4 g root or in tea, 3x/day; 2-4 ml liquid root extract (1:1 in 45% ethanol) 3x/day 
  • Rauwolfia, Snakewood (Rauvolfia serpentina) – Dose – 1-3 g powered root for insanity; 20-30 g powered root for high blood pressure; 200 mg root/day 1-3 weeks; 600 mg drug or 6 mg alkaloids  

Reference: Handbook of Medicinal Herbs (2006)


Dystrophin Protein May Be A Potential Treatment Target For Epilepsy

The hippocampal form of an essential muscle protein called dystrophin is found in higher levels in people with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), according to a new study published in the scientific journal Frontiers in Cellular Neuroscience. This could be the result of a compensatory mechanism – in response to too much excitation in the brain (hyperexcitation) – that tries to restore the inhibitory balance. Exploring the relationship between the different forms of dystrophin found in the central nervous system and hyperexcitation may highlight a new treatment target for epileptic seizures. The researchers, led by Dr Johan Vles, at Maastricht University Medical Centre in the Netherlands, took biopsies from the brains of people with TLE and looked at the distribution of the dystrophin protein within them. They compared this to similar samples obtained from deceased donors who did not have epilepsy (controls). More at: https://www.epilepsyresearch.org.uk

HN1 (5)New compound may help prevent epilepsy

 NEW YORK: A team of researchers have developed neuroprotective compounds that may help prevent the development of epilepsy in humans. Researchers from Louisiana State University in the US, discovered and patented the compounds known as LAU that prevented the seizures and their damaging effects on dendritic spines in an experimental model of epilepsy in mice. Epilepsy is a disorder in which nerve cell activity in the brain is disturbed, causing seizures. More at:http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/

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