Mary is a 32 year old woman who began to have seizures at age 13. Her first seizure occurred while paying video games. She had another event 6 months later in her hotel room at Disney World. She was seen in a hospital in Orlando and started on the antiepileptic medication, Dilantin. A week later she developed a rash and was switched to another antiepileptic medication, Depakote, which she took for three years. She continued to have jerks in her arms but the larger seizures occurred about once each year, usually associated with bright lights.
This pattern continued until 1990, when the seizures began to occur more frequently, up to twice each month. She was now unable to drive, sedated from numerous antiepileptic medications that failed to control her seizures, and wondered if she could go on working. She saw Dr. Pacia in late October 2006. She was admitted to Lenox Hill Hospital for continuous video and EEG monitoring. During the hospitalization she was found to have evidence of two distinct types of epilepsy. Two medicines to treat each type of epilepsy were used in combination with excellent results.
Since November, Mary has been seizure free. This is the first time in over 15 years that she has gone 5 months without a single seizure. Mary's confidence is back, her mood is much improved and she looks forward to driving and leading a normal life again.