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Posted by CCF Neuro MD on June 21, 1997 at 11:48:54:
In Reply to: Re: uncontrolled seizures posted by Therese on June 18, 1997 at 16:45:40:
: I am a 29 Female 9mos post gravid with seizure history. Hospiltalizations many eegs,cat and MRI normal. Recently had 24 hr eeg with 10 seizure files. Meds switched from Dilantin to Zarontin (Was placed on Dilantin after birth of child w/no success) No known reason for seizures.1.can birth of child bring on seizures after being dormant for 2yrs. 2.Can large amounts of caffiene be cause 3.Since being on Zarontin I am a veggie is this normal. Have seen nuero. today who is concerned but will not give answers has advised to continue taking Zarontin but agrees condition is getting worse. agreed to hospitalization in seizure monitoring program how successful is this and can Zarontin be having reaction to chemical balance in body and making a bad situation worse. I can not seem to get any answers.
Consulted with nureologist.. Explained Zarontin is used for "starring Seizure" also told me 24 hour eeg had shown several seizure activity files but the brain wave was not disrupted. I guess my question is ...should the brain wave be dirupted for it to be classiefied as a "starring seizure" or is that customary. I keep asking question of my nureologist but only seem to get the run around. I thank you for your help in advance.
I understand that you have had an exacerbation of your epilepsy recently postpartum, after a 2 year period of remission, and that your seizures are essentially staring spells.You have had a 24 hr EEG with numerous events recorded, but reportedly without EEG change. You are on Zarontin without benefit, after having tried Dilantin.
To try to answer your questions:
1. Yes, pregnancy and the postpartum period are associated with major hormonal changes which can cause cause an exacerbation of epilepsy.
2. Very large amounts of caffeine and other related drugs can induce seizures in susceptibe individuals and in the laboratory setting. There is, however no contraindication to modest caffeine consumption in epilepsy.
3. Vegetarianism is not abnormal, and I do not know anything about Zarontin inducing it.
4. Staring spells are seen in two kinds of seizures: absence seizures, and complex partial (temporal lobe) seizures. The former is treated with Zarontin and always has EEGchanges. The latter does not respond to Zarontin, and usually does have EEG changes. The absence of EEG abnormality raises the possibility of some other types of paroxysmal disorder.
5. Video EEG monitoring for epilepsy is an extremely useful test for resolving the questions raised in 4.
The Neurology Department at the Cleveland Clinic is acclaimed for its expertise in epilepsy, including video EEG monitoring, and you are welcome here for an opinion if you wish.
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