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of everyone affected by epilepsy

Study: Contact sports "may be acceptable" for people with epilepsy

17 November, 2004

There is no
significant evidence to suggest that contact sports are harmful to
people with epilepsy, according to research published in the journal Current Sports Medicine Reports.

Researchers Sanjiv Sahoo and Nathan Fountain, from the University of Virginia,
investigated the impact of epilepsy on the lives of athletes involved
in contact sports such as American football. The report suggests it is
conceivable exercise could exacerbate seizures either directly through
hyperventilation or indirectly by alteration of anticonvulsant levels
and recurrent minor head trauma could worsen epilepsy. However,
according to the researchers, evidence to the contrary abounds and very
few case reports support these notions.

The
researchers write that exercise benefits individuals with epilepsy in
many ways including improved seizure control, mood, and quality of
life.

The
study concludes that athletes with epilepsy should be evaluated on an
individual basis and follow sensible guidelines while participating in
contact sports.