Newsweek Magazine Shows Real Effects of Epilepsy

Finally, a thorough article outlining the complexities and dangers of having epilepsy. The April 20th edition of Newsweek magazine did a front page story on “The Mystery of Epilepsy – Why we must find a cure”. Great to see this kind of recognition from a major publisher.

13 Full pages have been dedicated to the story. The title of the article is “A Storm in the Brain – The toll of epilepsy has been overlooked and research underfunded – for too long. A call to action”.

“Put harshly, we need more of a cancerlike sensibility around epilepsy. We cannot usually see our friends’ cancer, but we do not hesitate to invest the search for a cure for different cancers with the utmost cultural and political importance. We must now do the same with epilepsy.”

The article goes on to say that Up to 50,000 Americans die each year from seizures and related causes, including drownings and other accidents; one in 10 people will suffer a seizure in their lifetimes. By some estimates, the mortality rate for people with epilepsy is two to three times higher—and the risk of sudden death is 24 times greater—than that of the general population. There are 200,000 new cases each year, and a total of more than 3 million Americans are affected by it—more than multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy and Parkinson’s disease combined. Between 1 and 3 percent of the population will develop some form of epilepsy before age 75.

The article and video clip speaks very frankly about the statistics and deaths in epilepsy and why more funding is needed. The story follows Dr. Devinsky as he treats patients in Manhattan. It is a very real look at the dangers of seizures and the obstacles parents and patients face everyday.

Finally it pushes for the need for immediate funding to find a cure for epilepsy. Families going through this reality know this more than anyone.

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About Arlene Martell

Arlene Martell is the publisher of and the author of Getting Adam Back – A Mother's triumph over Epilepsy and Autism. She resides in a seaside suburb on Vancouver BC Canada with her husband James and their four children Adam, Justin, Shelby and Victoria.