Hi I’m Joe.
I was first diagnosed with refractory multifocal epilepsy at the age of 15. I really struggled to accept my diagnosis the first few years. I felt like I had been robbed of being able to experience being a normal teenager. As the years went on, I learned to become resilient and try my best to come to peace with my diagnosis.
I am currently 28 years old and have tried various medications with very little luck. I have gone through many years of video telemetry in order for my doctors to understand the areas of my brain which are affected when I have seizures. Back in 2018 I underwent an intercranial EEG procedure in the hopes of being an eligible candidate for resection surgery, but was unfortunately not a candidate as my seizures came from different areas of the brain and could not be pinpointed.
I have love and support from my wife, family and friends and try my best to lead a normal life. I also have an amazing team of doctors that have and continue to help me along my journey. My hope is to continue to persevere in my career and build the kind of life I want despite my circumstances. I don’t ever want others to treat me differently because of my condition. I have often felt misunderstood and sometimes struggle to articulate my thoughts verbally due to my condition. I, like I’m sure many others that live with epilepsy would agree, just want to feel normal.
As frustrating as it is that my seizures are not yet under control, I have high hopes for the future and look forward to the possibilities that advancements in technology and medication have to offer. I want to spread awareness and help others that are like me. My message for anyone who has recently been diagnosed: Keep fighting and never give up! I refuse to allow my health to limit my potential and achievements.