Friday, November 4, 2011

30 Days Living with Epilepsy Day 3 {Epilepsy Awareness}

What tests were done to diagnose your Epilepsy?
For myself, I barely remember the tests.  I do recall going traveling 3 hours by car to MUSC in Charleston, SC weekly for several years in my childhood.  I recall having bloodwork done at least once monthly, often more.  I recall having EEG's done monthly too.  I also recall having x-ray and CT-Scans done to see what my brain was up to.  As a child it was a stressful time and now going through it all with my own girls, I see that it was just as stressful for my mother to go through too.

My oldest daughter's Epilepsy was diagnosed after two light seizures that she had at 3 months.  She was immediately sent to MUSC in Charleston too and immediately diagnosed with Epilepsy after her doctor reviewed her medical charts and my family history with this disorder.  She was given and EEG which showed a normal working brain, yet we know it wasn't because she was seizing for no reason.  She was not put through any other tests, except for bloodwork and she was placed on medication for the next four years of life.

My youngest daughter's Epilepsy was not so easily diagnosed.  She went through every test in the book: an EEG, EKG, MRI, CT-Scan, X-rays in the old fashioned turn of the century wooden torture like device, and blood work only to diagnose her with the very thing I told them in the first place: Familial Epilepsy.  Nowadays she only has to have occasional bloodwork and an EEG here or there. 

As you can tell, tests to diagnose this disorder varies with each case.  Some doctors prefer to be more thorough while others choose not to torture a small child when they pretty much know what is wrong.  Either way it's important to have a correct diagnoses and to treat each case to prevent seizure that could lead to serious damage for the person going through them. 

- Dana

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