Epilepsy absolutely treatable if diagnosed early, says PGI doc

Seizures and epilepsy affect infants and children more than any other age group. More than 60% of epilepsy cases start in childhood. At the Advanced Pediatrics Centre (APC) in PGI , on an average, 150 fresh cases of children suffering from the condition are seen annually

This year the PGIMER, Chandigarh is celebrating its Golden Jubilee Year (1962-2012). As a part of the celebrations, the Department of Pediatrics, Advanced Pediatric Centre is holding a series of public lectures for the benefit of the public on topics of general interest.

On November 23, to create awareness among the residents about the treatment of epilepsy and home based management of the disease and availability of drugs which even physicians can give, and to clear the air about myths attached to it, a public lecture between 4-5 PM will be held at the Pediatric Neurology Unit, of the Department of Pediatrics. The focus of this public awareness program will be "Epilepsy in Children" .

Epilepsy in children is one of the commonest reasons for hospital visits in children. Seizures and epilepsy affect infants and children more than any other age group. More than 60% of epilepsy cases start in childhood. In India the important causes are parasitic cyst in the brain (neurocysticercosis), birth associated brain injury such as hypoxic ischemic injury, and genetic causes, says Dr Pratibha Singh, head of the Pediatrics Neurology, PGIMER.

In fact, the chances of children getting affected by it are far greater as compared to adults. At the Advanced Pediatrics Centre (APC) of the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), on an average, 150 fresh cases of children suffering from the condition are seen annually.

Pediatrics neurologists at the APC say that one of the common causes of suffering from epilepsy is a cyst in the brain, Neurocysticercosis, which is otherwise easily an avoidable condition if only certain precautions are taken. "In this condition, the parasitic cyst enters the body after one consumes contaminated water or raw vegetables irrigated with contaminated water. The cyst lodges itself in the brain and causes seizures. Besides this, there are other reasons of epilepsy in children such as brain injuries at the time of birth, genetic causes like having a family history of epilepsy etc. However, now there are drugs available which can considerably controls the occurrence of seizure in epileptic children," said Dr Pratibha Singhi, Chief of Child Neurology and Neuro Development at PGIMER.

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