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is epilepsy considerd special needs?

745 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Victorian
my son was diagnosed yesterday with absence epilepsy. i'm not sure where to go to seek out info on alternatives to pharmacuetical treaments for him.

does anyone here know anything about ZARONTIN?

it sounds awfully nasty to me, but i don't know all the details yet - thanks in advance
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those drugs are.
now depending on the type of epliepsy, my MIL has the most severe kind (the kind that causes brain damage) so for her meds are paramount.
But if its a smaller more managable sezuire it would depend on your child's life and how it was impacted by the type of sezuire.

Small sezuires (the daydreaming type) might be managed without meds, but the sedating effect of the sezuires can be equal to the exhaustion after a spell depending on his symptoms. There's a diet is it ketatonic? not sure the name but its a high fat diet that has been shown to help with epilepsy...

I have strobe light epliepsy very common but not an indication for meds.
unless I was a strobe light honey

See a naturopath, seek options as the meds can be quite sedating and I am sure a growing child needs as little mental sedation as possible.
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my ds is having the daydreaming type, but his neurologist guesses that he is having 20 - 30 a day, thus missing 2 - 8 seconds that many times in one day can add up.

we have been to our naturopath many times, she reccomended we get the EEG - visit a neurologist and get more vital answers from testing that she can't do. the EEG results are on their way to her now. and he is being scheduled for an MRI soon to rule out any other possible problems.

the neurologist gave no room for treatment - he said meds were the only answer. i asked him if he had ever NOT treated this type of daydreaming epilepsy, and he said no. he also told me that it would lead to grand mal seizures if we don't medicate, but i have a hard time beleiving that.

we are giving him cod liver oil, which i beleive has the proper fat values to help prevent some of the seizures...

oh , and he is 7 - by the way.

hello again

I just replied to you in the Health and Healing forum, but wanted to add another hug here. Yes..epilepsy is a "special need" although there aren't many of this kind of special need on this particular forum.

The ketogenic diet mention by pp is a very harsh, strict diet that can also cause harm to the body. It is best reserved for uncontrolled seizures and only under supervision of a doc/naturopath who has experience with it.

Unfortunately, it is very difficult to find a ped neuro who is willing to try alternative therapies. If you live close to NYC, PM me and I'll give you the name of one we are trying to switch to.

It is possible for absence seizures to turn into grand mal seizures. It is called the "kindling" effect. BUT..if you can find an alternative therapy that actually controls the seizures he is having, then you can "put out the fire" and avoid that.

I wish I could give you answers, but I'm still trying to find those answers myself. Some folks on the Epilepsy foundation messageboards ( will have some good insight on the Zarontin.

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thanks a lot for all of your kind words, theatremum. i appreciate it a lot. my understanding is that petit mal seizures can lead to grand mal seizures, i guess what i don't understand is if the child is unmedicated, does that increase the chances?

i'm no where near nyc - , but thanks for the offer. i already discussed the ketogenic diet with my naturopath, and she said cod liver oil essentially does the same thing, without the side effects, so thats what we have been trying. i notice a DRASTIC increase in seizures if we forget the CLO - so i feel that is helping.

i am definitely going to theck out the EFA message boards, thanks a lot for the link!

take care, and i hope switching to a new ped neuro helps you and your daughter also.
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