Read the latest medical research on epilepsy and seizures including new treatments and potential cures under development.
Updated: 1 hour 11 min ago
Status epilepticus -- continuous or rapid sequential seizure activity for 30 minutes or more -- is a medical emergency with a high mortality rate in both children and adults. Prompt and effective treatment is key; therefore the American Epilepsy Society (AES) has released a new guideline to help physicians, hospitals, and health systems treat patients effectively.
Researchers study the link between malformations of the cerebral cortex and the occurrence of the neurological disease. Why does a structural irregularity in the temporal lobe make humans more susceptible to epileptic seizures? Experts have been searching for the answer to this question for a long time. A group of scientists has published a study involving a comparison of nearly 30,000 genes.
Desperate for relief, parents are taking unusual steps to help children plagued with seizures. The relief, however, comes in a most unlikely form: marijuana.
Researchers may have found a new way information is communicated throughout the brain. Their discovery could lead to identifying possible new targets to investigate brain waves associated with memory and epilepsy and better understand healthy physiology.
Children and young adults with severe forms of epilepsy that does not respond to standard antiepileptic drugs have fewer seizures when treated with purified cannabinoid, according to a multi-center study.
Cannabidiol (CBD), a medical marijuana derivative, was effective in reducing seizure frequency and well-tolerated and safe for most children and young adults enrolled in a year-long study, researchers report. These latest findings provide the first estimates of safety, tolerability and efficacy of prescription CBD in children and adults with severe, highly treatment-resistant epilepsy.
The ability to reliably pinpoint the anatomical source of epileptic seizures, different for each patient, remains elusive. New research looks at networks of electrical activity in the brain just prior to the onset of a seizure by studying the recordings of 88 seizures from 22 patients.
Halting production of new neurons in the brain following traumatic brain injury can help reduce resulting epileptic seizures, cognitive decline, and impaired memory, researchers report.
People with epilepsy have a 27-fold greater risk of sudden death than people without the disorder. However, many of these deaths could be prevented through greater identification of epilepsy as a cause of death, and in educating the public more effectively about the disease's life-threatening dangers, according to a new opinion article.
A computer model that identifies the parts of a person's brain responsible for epileptic seizures could be used to design personalized surgical procedures, researchers say.
New details into the link between epilepsy and suicidal behavior have been released. The research finds that suicide attempts -- whether a first attempt or a recurrent attempt -- are associated with new onset epilepsy in the absence of antiepileptic drug prescriptions and a diagnosis of psychiatric disorder, further strengthening the evidence that there is an underlying commonality.
The largest and fastest-growing segment of people with epilepsy are those age 60 and older. People with epilepsy face a number of related health challenges, including cognitive, physical and psychological disorders. But new research suggests other, less expected consequences on the aging process. Four studies presented at the American Epilepsy Society's 69th Annual Meeting explore the effects of epilepsy on the brain, providing insights that shed light on the long-term implications of life with epilepsy.
Around the globe there is high interest in the use of cannabidiol, for the treatment of people with epilepsy, especially children who have treatment-resistant forms of the disorder. Three studies presented at the American Epilepsy Society's 69th Annual Meeting in Philadelphia highlight emerging efficacy and safety data of Epidiolex, a pharmaceutical liquid formulation of cannabidiol. A fourth study highlights possible interactions of CBD with existing anti-epileptic drugs in animal models of seizures.
Uncontrolled epilepsy often requires a series of trials and errors to identify effective drug combinations. Continuous, long-term EEG data could streamline this process by revealing the full picture of a patient's seizure activity. Three new personal monitoring devices offer biometric recording technology that could allow patients to monitor clinical and subclinical seizure activity in the everyday home environment and get advance warning before a seizure strikes.
The leading cause of epilepsy-related death is a poorly understood phenomenon known as sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP). The risk factors and causes of SUDEP remain unclear but researchers have proposed explanations ranging from irregular heart rhythm to genetic predisposition to accidental suffocation during sleep.
Researchers are only beginning to understand the implications of disrupted sleep in people with epilepsy. Recent findings suggest that seizure-interrupted sleep could impede memory formation, impair cognitive performance and influence a myriad of other aspects of daily life. Scientists have now unveil previously unappreciated links between sleep disturbances and seizure control, and help clarify the causes and consequences of these issues in people with epilepsy.
Three studies explore the effects of mutations in the SCN8A gene, thought to underlie early infantile epileptic encephalopathy (EIEE) and other neurological conditions. The SCN8A gene mediates electrical signaling in the brain by controlling the flow of sodium currents. Findings from these studies could inform the development of precision medicine therapeutics and lead to more effective strategies for diagnosing and treating patients with epilepsy.
Technological advances ranging from gene editing to next-generation sequencing offer unprecedented access to the human genome and promise to reshape the diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy. Four studies demonstrate how these innovative technologies are being used to identify and manipulate genes linked to epilepsy.
A smartphone-induced EEG waveform and an intelligent algorithm for seizure detection are among the emerging new technologies. Four innovative studies promise to reshape current paradigms for seizure detection and epilepsy management.
Children with epilepsy face a number of challenges compared with their healthy peers, including an increased risk of cognitive impairment. Three studies presented the American Epilepsy Society's (AES) 69th Annual Meeting parse the complex underpinnings of cognitive development in these children, revealing a need for smarter assessments and targeted interventions.