Epilepsy Statistics and Facts
Some important Epilepsy Statistics and Facts are enlisted below.
These are common neurological disorders. By definition epilepsy is always secondary to brain pathology, whether the pathology is identified or not. On the other hand a seizure not necessarily always is secondary to brain pathology. For example a patient with electrolyte disturbances (glucose, sodium, calcium, magnesium etc) can have seizures; here brain just reacts to these irritants by firing its neurons excessively and producing the seizure but there is no primary fault in the brain.
About fifty million people in the world are estimated to be suffering from epilepsies. Majority of these patients are distributed among the poor and developing countries indicating level of hygiene, frequency of infections, peri-natal brain insult etc play a huge role in the production of seizures and epilepsies.
In general about one in twenty people develop a seizure in their life.
Similarly about one to two people per two hundred people develop epilepsy.
The incidence of Epilepsies is concentrated around the extremes of ages, means children and older people acquire this more than the adolescents, young and middle aged adults.
In USA about 200000 people are diagnosed with epilepsy every year and about 300000 with a seizure disorder every year.
There is a high incidence of mood disorders in patients with epilepsies and seizures especially depression.
Certain brain conditions are associated with a high incidence of epilepsy and seizures. About 1 in 4 (around 25%) of patients with MR (mental retardation) or autism has these conditions; about 12 to 15% of patients with CP (cerebral palsy) have these condition. If a patient has both MR & CP then the incidence of epilepsy & seizures nearly doubles as compared to having just one of these conditions.
About 3/4th of patients with epilepsies can come off their seizure medications with good success if they are seizure free for more than 2 years before tapering & stopping the drugs. For certain epilepsy conditions like JME (Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy) this observation doesn’t hold good because they are notorious to recur if medications are discontinued, even with prolonged seizure free period.
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