Epilepsy is one of the most common serious diseases affecting more than 50 million people globally. There are many difference causes for epilepsy including genetic disposition, head trauma or brain tumour; it may also develop as a result of stroke, infection or neurodegenerative disease.
Epilepsy is more than a medical diagnosis; it affects almost every aspect in the life of the person diagnosed with the disease – imposing serious psychosocial and social burdens on both the person with epilepsy and their families. For many people with epilepsy, the stigma attached to the disease is more difficult to deal with than the disease itself.
People with epilepsy have a 3-6 times greater risk of premature death. Many of the deaths from epilepsy could be prevented with appropriate medication and treatment.
In the developed world, up to 60% of people with epilepsy will have their seizures controlled with medication; however, in developing regions, it is estimated that up to 90% of people with epilepsy will not receive any regular treatment. Of the 50 million people living with epilepsy worldwide, 80% live in developing countries.
One in 10 people will experience one seizure during their lifetime. On average, one in every 100 people will develop epilepsy. In the developing world, the incidence is significantly higher.