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A COMPLETE GUIDE TO MEDICAL ALERT SYSTEMS

Aging is a fact of life for everyone. But thanks to advances in medical technology, medications, and tools that make living and workspaces more accessible, people can expect to stay in their homes for far longer today than they used to.   Every year, more than one-fourth of adults 65 and older will take a fall. For those that do, the risk of a repeat fall is doubled.   That doesn’t mean living at home is without its dangers. Every year, more than one-fourth of adults 65 and older will take a fall, according to the Centers for Disease Control. For those that do, the risk of a repeat fall is doubled. One out of five of these falls results in a serious injury to the head or other part of the body, while 95% of hip fractures are caused by falling.

Better mini brains could help scientists identify treatments for Zika-related brain damage

The team plans to continue using its improved organoids to better understand human brain development and to learn more about autism spectrum disorders, epilepsy and other neurological conditions.   UCLA researchers have developed an improved technique for creating simplified human brain tissue from stem cells. Because these so-called “mini brain organoids” mimic human brains in how they grow and develop, they’re vital to studying complex neurological diseases.   In a study published in the journal Cell Reports, the researchers used the organoids to better understand how Zika infects and damages fetal brain tissue, which enabled them to identify drugs that could prevent the virus’s damaging effects.

SenTiva Approved for Treatment of Epilepsy

Device billed as smallest, lightest responsive therapy for drug-resistant epilepsy   The SenTiva implantable generator and Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS) Therapy Programming System (LivaNova USA) have received FDA approval for the treatment of patients with drug-resistant epilepsy.   SenTiva is the smallest and lightest responsive therapy for epilepsy, LivaNova says. The new VNS Therapy Programming System features a wireless wand and new user interface on a small tablet. Together, the components offer patients with drug-resistant epilepsy a physician-directed customizable therapy with smart technology and proven results to reduce the number of seizures, lessen the duration of seizures, and enable a faster recovery, LivaNova says.

Simulating a brain-cooling treatment that could one day ease epilepsy

Using computer simulation techniques, scientists have gained new insights into the mechanism by which lowering the temperature of specific brain regions could potentially treat epileptic seizures. The results are published in PLOS Computational Biology.   About 50 million people worldwide deal with sudden, recurring seizures that are the hallmark of epilepsy. Treatment with medication or surgery does not work for some patients, so scientists have been investigating a potential alternative called focal cooling, in which a device would be implanted in the brain to suppress the electrical signals — discharges — that characterize epileptic seizures.

Evogen Receives U.S. Patent Covering Its Novel Epilepsy Blood Test

Patent Covers Key Biomarkers in Evogen’s EvoScoreDX™ Biomarker-Based Blood Test for Distinguishing Epileptic Seizures; Addresses Major Unmet Need for Better Epilepsy Diagnostics Evogen, Inc., a leader in proteomics and genomics-based testing for improved diagnosis and treatment of neurological disorders, today reported that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued a key patent covering the company’s biomarker-based blood test that can accurately identify epileptic seizures. It is the first patent to issue in Evogen’s multi-application intellectual property portfolio of blood-based biomarkers for seizure detection in epilepsy and other neurological diseases. U.S. Patent No. 9,772,335 is owned by the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) and is exclusively licens...

Genetic Testing Helps Determine Cause of Epilepsy in the Very Young

A study published in JAMA Pediatrics supports the use of genetic testing, especially with DNA sequencing, as the first-line diagnostic method for children under 3 years of age presenting with seizures. Epilepsy is a nervous system disorder characterized by unprovoked, repeated seizures.  Although it can affect all age groups, it is more common in young children and older adults. Treatment with medications can control seizures for nearly 80% of individuals with epilepsy; however, treating children under the age of 3 is more difficult since early life epilepsies are often a consequence of numerous neuro-developmental disorders, many of which have genetic origins.  In fact, as often as not, the cause for seizures in cases of epilepsy in children under the age of three is unknown.

Your neurons register familiar faces, whether you notice them or not

When people see an image of a person they recognize—the famous tennis player Roger Federer or actress Halle Berry, for instance—particular cells light up in the brain. Now, researchers reporting in Current Biology on September 21 have found that those cells light up even when a person sees a familiar face or object but fails to notice it. The only difference in that case is that the neural activity is weaker and delayed in comparison to what happens when an observer consciously registers and can recall having seen a particular image.

NeuroPace Epileptic Seizure Control System: Interview with Dr. Martha Morrell, CMO of NeuroPace

People with certain types of epilepsy may have the option to use a therapy that doesn’t include drugs. The RNS System from NeuroPace, a company out of Mountain View, California, monitors the brain for signs of an oncoming seizure and stimulates it to disrupt the process. It has been approved in the U.S. for about four years now, and we wanted to find more about how it works and how it’s being used. We had a chance to speak with Dr. Martha Morrell, Chief Medical Officer of NeuroPace, who was kind enough to answer our questions. Medgadget: The NeuroPace RNS system has shown to be effective at reducing seizures in many patients with epilepsy. Can you give us a brief overview of how the system functions?

Pioneering research reveals how altered brain networks can lead to seizures

An international team of scientists, led by mathematicians from the University of Exeter’s Living Systems Institute, have developed a ground-breaking new method that can identify regions of brain tissue most likely to generate seizures in people with epilepsy. The innovative new method, which utilizes mathematical modelling, offers the potential to complement existing clinical approaches and could lead to enhanced surgical outcomes. The new research is published in leading scientific journal, PLOS Computational Biology. Epilepsy, which affects around 1 in 100 people worldwide, is predominantly treated by a range of medications. However, in around a third of cases people do not experience adequate seizure control through drugs and alternative therapies are sought. In some instances su...

New method identifies brain regions most likely to cause epilepsy seizures

Scientists have developed a new way to detect which areas of the brain contribute most greatly to epilepsy seizures, according to a PLOS Computational Biology study. The strategy, devised by Marinho Lopes of the University of Exeter and colleagues, could help surgeons select specific brain areas for removal to stop seizures.

Neuroscientists develop new forms of diagnosis and therapy for temporal lobe epilepsy

What if you fell off your bicycle today and ten years later you developed epilepsy? Relationships like this might appear far-fetched but are entirely possible, say Freiburg researchers. Using the latest MRI scanning procedures, Prof. Dr. Carola Haas, Department of Neurosurgery, Prof. Dr. Jürgen Hennig, Department of Radiology, and Prof. Dr. Ulrich Egert, Department of Microsystems Engineering (MST) of the University of Freiburg, in cooperation with Prof. Dr. Jan Korvink of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, have shown how certain disorders of the hippocampus can initiate a drug resistant epilepsy. The team has discovered biomarkers that – if used for screening – could massively improve treatment options for epilepsy. The researchers have published their results in the onlin...

Genetic Testing Can Help Pinpoint Epilepsy Earlier

A new study supports routine genetic testing for epilepsy in young children with seizures. “Precision medicine means nothing without precision diagnosis, and we can now provide precision diagnosis,” said study lead author Anne Berg, of the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute at Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

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