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Claire Rutz

on 5 June 2014

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Transcript of Epilepsy

By: Claire Rutz
Inform children about epilepsy

There is a severe lack of knowledge about epilepsy in children, which is significant because they are the most affected age group

Knowledge will help others understand this condition and prevent discrimination and make those with epilepsy feel more comfortable about their condition.
1 in 100 people currently have epilepsy

1 in 26 people will have epilepsy at some point in their life - typically childhood
Over 3 million people in the US have epilepsy
-500 new cases diagnosed everyday-

Emotional Effects:
Behavioral Problems
Cognitive Impairment
A surge of electrical activity in the brain

Affects how a person acts & feels for a period of time
Alteration of mental state

Types of Seizures:
Abnormal electrical activity on both sides of the brain

Tonic seizures
Clonic seizures
Tonic-Clonic seizures
Myoclonic seizures
Atonic seizures
Absence seizures
Abnormal electrical activity in one part of the brain

Affects 60% of people with epilepsy

Simple Partial Seizure: remains conscious, seeing/hearing/feeling/smelling/tasting things that aren't there, nausea, unexplained feeling (joy, anger, sadness)

Complex Partial Seizure: change in consciousness, strange behaviors/sensations, automatisms (blinking, chewing)
Types of Epilepsy
Benign Rolandic Epilepsy: onset between ages 5-8, most common form of epilepsy, infrequent seizures, seizures upon waking, typically clonic seizures affecting one side of the body

Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy: 10% of all epilepsies, myoclonic jerks (while conscious), over time can develop tonic-clonic seizures

Absence Epilepsy: random absence seizures

Temporal Lobe Epilepsy: complex partial seizures
Neurons communicate through an electrochemical process
Information is carried along axons and dendrites due to changes in action potential (electrical properties)
Electrical signal is released through the neuron
When the signal reaches the end of the neuron a neurotransmitter is released

Neural Oscillation
: repetitive neural activity; rhythmic patterns of action potential
Synchronized activity in number of neurons firing leads to macroscopic oscillations
Childhood Epilepsy
Epilepsy is most common in children under 10

60-70% of cases are diagnosed in early childhood

1 in 20 children will have a seizure between 6 months and 5 years old

Children struggle emotionally because of judgements made by others about seizures or side effects of their epilepsy or medication. They are isolated by others and can isolate themselves.
Adolescents who have driving restrictions may be isolated from certain activities.
Adolescents may fear social situations such as dating or being in an area where no one knows about their epilepsy and can help them
Why Epilepsy?
I conducted a great deal of research on various pediatric neurological conditions and epilepsy is the most common.

There are so many 'unknowns' in the study of epilepsy. I felt challenged by these unknowns and wanted to conduct more research as well as to teach others
The Plan
Creating a children's book and presenting it to elementary schools for the children to read.

1. Choosing a class to give a preliminary survey about epilepsy
2. Reading the book to the class
3. Doing a final survey to see what the children learned
A Not-So-Ordinary Day
Main Character: Hannah

Hannah is introduced as an ordinary character, nervous about her first day of school, making new friends, and playing on the playground.

While at recess Hannah has a grand-mal seizure and has to go home.

The children are nervous and scared about what happened to their classmate so the teacher, Miss. June, explains to them what a seizure is and what epilepsy is.

After the lesson the children have a better understanding about how the brain works and what causes a seizure and its relation to epilepsy.
Before Survey's
After Survey's
I found that my project successfully educated children on epilepsy and helped to change their perspective on it.

The Future:
Be able to publish the book and donate it to local elementary schools.

Educating Children
Initial plan: PowerPoint presentation on epilepsy
Very informational and factual
Children have a short attention span
Children would lose interest or not pay attention

The Process
1. Research

2. Collect Materails

3. Reach out to medical professionals

4. Contact elementary school

5. Classroom teaching
Collecting the Materials
Reaching Out
Interview with a pediatric neurologist
Has had patients with a wide range of forms of epilepsy
Insight on how it can be treated

Interview with a person living with epilepsy
Provided a new perspective on what it is like to live with epilepsy, physically and emotionally
How even though epilepsy is very controlled it still effects everyday life
-Kid-friendly PowerPoint - changed to children's book

-Survey on PowerPoint

-List of questions for pediatric neurologist

-List of questions for person living with epilepsy

-E-mail to elementary school
Full transcript