Epilepsy, it effects 3 million Americans and generally, we as treating physiciansas neurologistsdon’t know the cause. Certainly in some cases the cause is readily identifible, but most cases of epilepsy are what we call, idopathic, meaning we don’t understand the cause. And again, that’s 3 million Americans. Now, the goto treatment for epilepsy is obviously using medicationwhat we call anticonvulsive medications. But let’s have al look at kind of another perspective on what we should be thinking about in terms of this sometimes devastating situation. This is a study published in the journal Neurology, a very well respected peer review.
Journal that describes the case of an individual, a 30 year old man who has a headache history for 2 years, and also what are called refractory seizures, meaning that despite giving this gentleman seizure medication, his seizures continued. In addition he has other issues of chronic constipation, he has a rash on his elbows and his knees, and interestingly the researches found that his antigliadin levels, antibodies against gliadin, which is something found in gluten, in wheat and barley and rye, were elevated, meaning he was reacting to glutencontaining foods. And what they did for this gentleman was really.
Quite interesting. They went ahead and put him on a glutenfree diet. And what they found when they did that was that his seizures completely went away. So not only did his seizures go away, but his blood work actually normalized as well. Very interesting. Giving a gentleman with a seizure disorder a glutenfree diet and his seizures went away. And here’s another case of a 23 year old woman who has seizures for 11 years, also called refractory seizures, meaning that nothing could help her in terms of pharmaceuticals. They put her also on a glutenfree diet and her epilepsy went away.
Epilepsy and Gluten Sensitivity
Well, the reason we’re having this discussion today is because of this recent article that appeared in the journal Neurology calling for us to look at treatment of epilepsy in a different way. The study is called Epilepsy surgery trends in the United States 19902008, again, published in the journal Neurology. Stating, and I quote, Temporal lobectomy, and that means taking out the temporal lobe of the brain continues to be heavily under utilized as a treatment for epilepsy. Patients who are medically refractory after failing 2 anti epileptic medications should be referred to a comprehensive epilepsy center for surgical.
Evaluation. And this is a picture of what it looks like when you’ve had your temporal lobe of your brain removed. So what this study is saying is that if you are refractory, meaning that you’re still having seizures, after two medications have been tried, then you should be referred to a center to have your temporal lobe of your brain removed. Now I opened this tutorial showing you cases of patients who had gluten sensitivity whose epilepsy resolved when they simply went gluten free. Let’s take a look at another.
Study. This is a report called, Gluten sensitivity from gut to brain, written by a British researcher named Doctor Marios Hadjivassiliou, published in the journal Lancet Neurology. And he tells us that most patients who present with neurological manifestations of gluten sensitivity may have no gastrointestinal symptoms. And what that means is basically that we should always have a high index of suspicion for gluten sensitivity, even if there are no gastrointestinal issues. My point is this that prior to taking out somebody’s temporal lobe, what would be the harm of trying that epilepsy patient on a glutenfree diet At the very least you’ll.