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Stories about research

New device claims to be able to predict seizures

1 May 2013

brainA research study says that seizures can be predicted with a new device. The device is put in the brain, and is able to give a warning that a seizure is coming. The study was only small, but could prove to be an exciting development for people with epilepsy.

The device, once inside the brain, predicted seizures in some adults who have epilepsy that can’t be controlled by anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs). “Knowing when a seizure might happen could dramatically improve the quality of life and independence of people with epilepsy,” said lead author Mark Cook from the University of Melbourne in Australia.

New study links sodium valproate to autism

26 Apr 2013

There has been a scientific study carried out in Denmark. It looked at 650,000 children born between 1996 and 2006. The study found that the children’s risk of having any type of autism spectrum disorder was increased, when certain mothers took valproate during pregnancy.

There is already a known risk with taking sodium valproate during pregnancy. It increases the risk of children being born with birth defects and thinking problems. The new research also shows that valproate significantly increases the risk of having a child with autism or an autism spectrum disorder.

New process improves surgery planning

10 Apr 2013

A new report published in the March issue of Neurosurgery has shed light onto Stereo-electroencephalography (SEEG).

SEEG is a process that aims to improve surgical panning and surgery for patients with intractable epilepsy. It uses 3D imaging of the brain alongside placing electrodes in the area of the brain in which seizures originate. This results in highly detailed data of the brain to increase accuracy when planning brain surgery.

Empowering people to manage their epilepsy: the SMILE project

9 Apr 2013

Man presenting a classResearchers from King’s College London are doing research to empower people with epilepsy. This work encourages people to take more control over the management of their condition – and possibly have fewer seizures. Leone Ridsdale, Laura Goldstein and Adam Noble describe their new research project, which aims to design an information course for people with epilepsy. Peter Fox explains

Loneliness in young people with epilepsy

25 Jan 2013

lonliness story newsA new Scandinavian study of young people shows that epilepsy is the number two cause of loneliness in this group.

Dr Kristin Alfstad surveyed over 10,000 young people in Norway to find out how they see their social relationships with family, classmates and so on. The survey used statements like 'I have a feeling nobody knows me well'. Respondents were then invited to say how correct they felt the statement was.

US study into DBS for epilepsy

26 Dec 2012

brainMore research into deep brain stimulation (DBS) has shown that the positive effects in epilepsy are long lasting. The latest results show a 69 per cent average reduction in seizure frequency five years after the DBS device was implanted.

DBS is a treatment that involves a stimulating electrode being implanted in the brain. This stimulates specific areas deep in the brain to prevent seizures. It has been used to treat Parkinson’s disease for many years, but is still rarely used to treat epilepsy.

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