Friday, May 11, 2007

The Epilepsy Shake, Rattle and Roll

Ashley started on a new seizure medicine yesterday – her third, which means she now takes three medicines to try to control her seizures. This is pretty new territory for both Ashley and me because for about seven years, one medicine controlled her seizures very, very well. However, over the last six months, her seizures have re-appeared at the alarming rate of 3-5 a day, and some days even more. It may take 2-3 weeks for the new medicine to reach a level that will hopefully be effective in controlling the seizures. Unfortunately, the side effects of the new medicine have the potential for being worse than the seizures.

I know I shouldn’t complain because one of my friends has a daughter who is on seven seizure medicines and still has seizures. The son of another friend had a Vagus Nerve Stimulator surgically implanted to help with his seizures. And, another friend has a young child having 200-300 seizures a day. No matter how many seizures your child has, it is always very scary and very difficult for both the child and the rest of the family.

Ashley’s neurologist has scheduled an MRI of her brain to see if a brain tumor exists. Ashley has had two brain tumors removed in the past, so having another one is a very real possibility. Fortunately both the tumors she had in the past were benign and that information leads the doctor to believe that any new tumors would also be benign. It will be about a month before the MRI will occur which makes me feel a little better. The fact that the doctor doesn’t feel an immediate need for the MRI has helped allay some of my fears. Still, those of you who know me well, know I will be worried sick until we get some answers.

Through all of this, Ashley is still the vibrant, happy, exuberant person she has always been. She is strong and will face this new challenge head on (no pun intended). She is setting an example for me to follow. She is my precious child, and I just want to make everything okay for her….

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