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New stage show about epilepsy opens

29 Jan 2018

The University of Exeter and Exeter Northcott have teamed up to produce an interactive performance about epilepsy.

The performance, called Beyond My Control, will combine improvised scenes, stories and mathematics. It will aim to help the audience understand seizures better.

The show was created by Paul Jepson, artistic director at Exeter Northcott and professor of mathematics John Terry from the University of Exeter.

Topiramate may be linked to increased risk of birth defects in babies born to women taking the medicine

9 Jan 2018

TopirimateA new US study has found that taking the medicine topiramate during pregnancy may cause an increased risk of birth defects.

Topiramate is an epilepsy medicine sometimes used to treat generalised tonic-clonic seizures or focal seizures. This medicine can also be used for other conditions, such as bipolar disorder.

Epilepsy Action’s ‘Epilepsy and you’ online self-management course short-listed for a healthcare industry award

1 Dec 2017

Epilepsy Action was shortlisted for a healthcare industry award for its online self-management course, ‘Epilepsy and you’. The course was developed to help people with epilepsy better manage their own condition. The charity was nominated for the Health Service Journal’s 2017 Awards.

Government update to guidelines about switching between different forms of epilepsy medicines says prescribers should consider the individual’s concerns

1 Dec 2017

The government has added to its guidelines about switching between different forms of epilepsy medicines. The update says that prescribers need to take into consideration people’s thoughts and concerns.

Fitness to practice medicine impaired, says medical tribunal looking into Dr Valerie Murphy in charge of Connor Sparrowhawk’s care

14 Nov 2017

Dr Valerie Murphy’s fitness to practice medicine has been found to be impaired by misconduct. This was decided by a medical practitioners tribunal on Sunday 12 October.

Dr Murphy was in charge of the care of 18-year-old Connor Sparrowhawk at an NHS facility in 2013. Connor, who had epilepsy, learning disabilities and autism, died after having a seizure in the bath.

Welsh government shows support for children with conditions like epilepsy in schools

7 Nov 2017

The Welsh government has supported an amendment to its new bill for additional learning needs in children.

A number of organisations have pushed for the Additional Learning Needs and Education Tribunal Bill (ALN Bill) in Wales to include medical conditions such as epilepsy. These include Epilepsy Action Cymru, Diabetes UK and The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH).

Parliamentary debate suggests a public inquiry should be held into sodium valproate “scandal”

24 Oct 2017

A parliamentary debate was held in the House of Commons in London on 19 October. At the debate, MPs discussed sodium valproate and foetal anticonvulsant syndrome.

Norman Lamb, chair of the Science and Technology Committee, led the debate. He said that there had been “systematic failure” to warn women of the risks of valproate since the 1970s.

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