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Seizures & Epilepsy

Here’s a bold statement.  Every seizure patient should be given the chance to regulate his own brain – and not be completely reliant on seizure medication.  Medical professionals unfamiliar with neurofeedback perhaps may object.

But health professionals who have used it – including several thousand RN’s, psychologists, and MDs -- recognize the power of using brain training to help the individual become more stable. Increased stability is reported to correlate with decreased seizures.  Often, therapists report that the MD helps reduce seizure meds after they see the increased stability of a client. 

Seizures are primarily a brain that loses its stability.  Because there are 18 good studies showing the effectiveness of neurofeedback in reducing seizures, everyone should be given the chance to train.  They aren’t – because they aren’t told about it by the health profession who are primarily unaware of it.  It’s still considered new, though it’s been a around a while.

Dramatic reduction in seizures

A case recently involves a woman with uncontrolled seizures over the last 12 years.  She’s being seen by a top neurologist at the University of Miami and was on a lot of medications. That resulted in ongoing side effects for her. 

After training with neurofeedback and helping counsel her on some other life changes, she has been seizure free for 3 months.  This is pretty much unheard of in neurology.  She twice reduced her medications while eliminating (so far) her seizures.  All occurred after she started training with neurofeedback. 

Virtually no neurologists are familiar with this technology and they don’t even tell patients about its existence. The key reason is low reimbursement.  In the early 1990’s, biofeedback reimbursements were cut by 75% by Medicare and other insurance providers.  Most MDs dropped most biofeedback at that time.  They’ve never become unaware of the advances in the field since, which are significant. . 

Since most MD’s aren’t aware of neurofeedback, they assume it must not be significant. 

In fact, it’s an amazing innovation for seizure patients.  But changing MDs minds are hard. . 

If you know a seizure patient who is interested in neurofeedback, we strongly suggest you read the research yourself (which is very impressive).  Or, come for a free consult so we can talk about your specific situation and answer questions. 

Give any seizure patient the chance to try neurofeedback. If it works, it’s impact can be quite life changing for a seizure patient. 

Example Case

An MD friend of ours in Massachusetts saw a 7 year old girl who was on lots of medication for seizures.  It was still uncontrolled.  They had recorded up to 100 seizures a day for this girl, who was seeing one of the top Pediatric neurologists in Boston/Harvard.  After 3 months of neurofeedback training (including 5 days a week using home equipment under supervision) she became seizure free.  Within 4 more months there were able to reduce her medications a great deal.  This little girl and her mom got her life back.  The Pediatric neurologist was impressed, but never referred any other patients for treatment.   

It is the nature of medicine to focus on what you know.  MDs know medications.  That’s what they use.  They don’t know or understand neurofeedback, and are not drawn to do so. 

History of reducing seizures with neurofeedback

Neurofeedback was discovered during an experiment with cats.  Initially the cats did neurofeedback to show they could train their brain (they could).

In a later experiment, the cats whose  brains were trained had greatly reduced seizures after they were exposed to a chemical vs. normal cats with no brain training. 

Shortly after that, some labs starting training people who had seizures.  There have been over 18 studies that show that seizures are often reduced by brain training.

 

NY Neurofeedback and QEEG • Merlyn Hurd Ph.D. • Licensed Psychologist and Certified Neurotherapist
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