Pinpoint Cure for Epilepsy

1 decade 4 weeks 1 hour ago Monday, November 19 2007 Nov 19, 2007 Monday, November 19, 2007 7:32:32 AM CST November 19, 2007 in News

A simple MRI can help doctors cure patients.

Caroline Martin, an epilepsy patient, is wired up in a hospital to monitor an onset of seizures.

"I knew it was dangerous because the whole time if you had a seizure and dropped it, it could cause damage to things as well as yourself...Cooking, hot liquids, decorating, climbing ladders, all things I didn't do before, but I do now," Martin said. 

Caroline is one of the first patients to benefit from pioneering research on brain scans.

"The team here from the National Society for Epilepsy have brought together a series of advanced techniques using this MRI scanner to pinpoint with unprecedented accuracy the exact site of seizures in the brain so they can target surgeries to remove the source of the epilepsy," John Duncan a representative for the National Society for Epilepsy said.

"We're looking for a physical abnormality in the hardware of the brain that is giving rise to the short circuit that is an epileptic seizure. In Caroline's case for example, we showed an abnormality in the part of the brain known as the temporal lobe," he said.

Caroline's life is now transformed.  She can do everyday activities that were once too dangerous.

"Rather than a 'cared-for', I've become a carer," she said.
 
The new techniques pinpointed abnormalities in 29 percent of patients whose brains appeared normal in other scans. This is a breakthrough of hope for epileptics like Caroline.

Britain's national society for epilepsy conducted the study. Researchers stress removing any part of the brain is dangerous.

Bran Lowers Diabetes Risk

In other health news, according to a Harvard study, a little more bran in your life goes a long way.

Researchers found whole grains can help lower your risk for type two diabetes. Bran was also showed as effective in fighting off the disease.

Asthma After 9/11

In New York, rescue workers who responded to the World Trade Center are still being affected by asthma.

The New York Health Department says nearly four perecent of rescue workers on 9/11 developed asthma after the attacks.  That's 12 times higher than the normal U.S. Population.

Research also showed the longer the workers were at the site, the more likely they were to develop asthma.

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