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Updated: March 26, 2013 16:02 IST

Epilepsy patients can lead a normal life: expert

Ramesh Susarla
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Chennai-based Neurologist and epilepsy specialist Major General S. Kumaravelu in Vijayawada.
The Hindu Chennai-based Neurologist and epilepsy specialist Major General S. Kumaravelu in Vijayawada.

‘Purple Day emphasises on creating community support system’

Majority of epilepsy attacks are in the teens and kin of the patients need to know a lot about their condition to provide the right support in bringing them back to the mainstream of life within a short span. Purple Day celebrated world over emphasises on creating community support system and associations so that they could be part of the normal social life.

Expressing these views, senior neurologist Major General S. Kumaravelu from Chennai, who was in the city to attend a CME programme of Indian Medical Association organised at Repalle in Guntur district, he sympathised with the patients and wanted society to support them as majority of them were bread-earners of many families.

While the root cause for the condition is improper electrical impulses in the brain, the causative factors are largely unknown except for in some cases of brain tumour, or some other detectable brain aberrations.

Out of the epileptic patients – who are 5 in 1,000 in the world, 60 per cent can be brought back to normalcy through a regimen of safe drugs.

After a three-month treatment with drugs, controlled physical activities depending upon the profession and age, a two-year observation during treatment can put a person back on normal track, Dr. Kumaravelu told The Hindu.

While very small number of patients suffer due to genetic factor, a good doctor-patient relation like that of in a family doctor concept was essential to make a person normal, he said.

Saving marriages should be the first priority by counselling the parents of girls and boys suffering with this condition, he said. “People should not restrict the violent movements of an epileptic person, but must ensure that they do not injure themselves and make them lie down on their side so that saliva does not get into their lungs,” he added.

People should not surround the patients if they have an attack of fit, but ensure that there is sufficient airflow and supply of oxygen is there.

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