Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Epilepsy and Quincy

So we have finally heard back from the Dr. on the results of my 9 year old daughters suspected seizures. She does in fact have epilepsy. Not news we were excited to hear, but in a way we were glad to hear it. It was obvious that something was going on... and so knowing that we can 1. identify what it was and 2. easily treat it with medication makes the diagnosis not to terribly scary.

Here is info on her specific form of epilepsy:
Absence Epilepsy

People with absence epilepsy have repeated absence seizures. Absence epilepsy tends to run in families. The seizures frequently begin in childhood or adolescence. If the seizures begin in childhood, they usually stop at puberty.

Although the seizures don't have a lasting effect on intelligence or other brain functions, children with absence epilepsy frequently have so many seizures that it interferes with school and other normal activities.

Absence seizures.

Absence seizures, also called petit mal (which means "little sickness"), cause a momentary loss of consciousness. These episodes usually last less than 30 seconds and may be so brief that they go unnoticed. People with absence epilepsy can experience as many as 50 to 100 of these seizures a day. They may look as though they are simply staring off into space or they may go rigid or jerk and twitch.

This all started the end of last school year. At first we were concerned about her hearing, but then noticed that even when we talked louder she wouldn't respond. So then we decided [God forgive us!] that she was just the biggest air head we had ever seen. But every once in a while something would seem more than just "spacing off", and I made the comment to my husband in late August that "If I didnt' know any better, I would think it was a seizure. You know, the kind where you freeze and stare off into space..." It never really occurred to me that this was a very real condition!

So anyway, fast forward to Sept. and I get a call from the school nurse saying that her teacher was concerned because he thought Quincy had a seizure in class. The nurse seemed almost embarrassed to call and tell me, but felt that she should. I laughed, but told her I knew exactly what behavior he was seeing. I then felt more justified in my comment of it possibly being a seizure, so I called the Dr. Who ordered an EEG, and here we are with a daughter who will be going on anti seizure meds.

We are praying that this is something she will outgrow. But if not, then that it is at the least easily controlled. John has an aunt [his dads sister] with Epilepsy, but it occurs with Grand Mal seizures, not petite mal like Quincy. And my mom has a cousin with the same condition as Johns aunt. So while it is in "the genes", it is strange to me that it has skipped so many and landed on Quincy.

Anyway, that is my news of the week in the continuing saga of parenthood! I have decided that if one has enough kids, you will experience most everything by the time they are grown. :)


  1. She is still just as precious as ever :)

    What a thing to have to walk through, my friend. New challenges hey?

    You are such a wonderful mommy.