Researchers at the University of Liverpool are appealing for participants to help with a new study into epilepsy.
Yesterday was International Epilepsy Day, which is marked every year on the second Monday of February.
This year’s initiative coincides with a call for people living with epilepsy to give their insights to the team at the University of Liverpool’s Department of Public Health, Policy and Systems in a survey being conducted ahead of the proposed study.
What is epilepsy?
Epilepsy is a serious neurological condition which affects the brain and the nervous system. It can develop in people of all ages, races and social classes.
More than half a million people in the UK are living with epilepsy. This equates to around one in every 100 people.
The condition can manifest itself in more than 40 different types of seizure, not all of which are physical.
Currently there are no epilepsy-preventing medications. The anti-epileptic drugs on offer are only able to reduce seizures in people who have already developed the condition.
University of Liverpool researchers have therefore been working to find a treatment that could be given to people after their first seizure to stop or slow down epilepsy.
They are asking for people living with the condition, as well as their family and friends, to complete their online ‘STOP EPILEPSY’ survey before the new treatment is trialled.
What do people think?
LJMU student Danny Ball, 23, was diagnosed with epilepsy when he was just 16 years old.
He described the diagnosis as “overwhelming” and has welcomed the research into preventative treatments.
“It’s a good idea,” he told Merseynewslive.
“New drugs are always a good idea and if there’s another way to stop seizures then that’s always helpful.
“For me, it’s not too bad, but for other people it gets in the way of their daily lives. Anyway, to help someone is a good idea.”
Danny also highlighted the importance of initiatives such as International Epilepsy Day.
The annual event was created by the International Bureau for Epilepsy and the International League Against Epilepsy to help raise awareness about the condition in more than 130 countries.
“It’s important because people don’t know how to deal with seizures,” Danny said.
“If you collapse and have a seizure and you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time, it’s a scary thing for everyone, not just the person having the seizure.
“People need to be able to deal with these things, because it’s real and it happens.”
Participants in the University of Liverpool’s ‘STOP EPILEPSY’ survey must be aged 16 or over and will be entered into a prize draw. For more information, click here.
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