At Advanced Neurosurgery Associates (ANA), we are acutely aware that epilepsy represents a complicated combination of physical as well as psychological and emotional consequences. In fact, that’s why we emphasize our team approach to complete family care for our many pediatric epilepsy patients.
Research explains the impact of pediatric epilepsy on such areas as learning disabilities, behavioral disorders, anxiety and depression. But perhaps most instructive of all are the testimonials of past ANA patients, Stephanie Conklin and Victoria Vega, who speak on the emotional and psychological impact of their epilepsy history. Both have resumed productive and seizure-free lives following successful surgery at ANA.
Pediatric epilepsy, a condition that affects the nervous system, is the most common neurological problem in children.
Of the approximately 150,000 people in the U.S. who develop epilepsy each year, 20,000 to 45,000 of them are children and adolescents. But the highest risk group in the pediatric population for developing epilepsy are those ages 1 to 12 months. Pediatric epilepsy is defined as two or more unprovoked seizures more than 24 hours apart in a child over one month old. Seizures are episodes of abnormal brain activity that cause changes in attention or behavior. Pediatric epilepsy may be due to a medical condition or an injury that affects the brain, or the cause could be idiopathic (of unknown origin).
Common causes of epilepsy in children include:
- Fever, stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA)
- Traumatic brain injury
- Infections, including brain abscess, meningitis, and encephalitis
- Brain problems that are present at birth (congenital brain defect)
- Brain tumor
- Abnormal blood vessels in the brain