Anthony Collins Solicitors recently supported International Women’s Day by wearing purple and taking part in fundraising activities. Purple seems to be a popular colour for March, 26 March was also the international day for epilepsy (Purple Day). Purple day was created in 2008 by Cassidy Megan, a young girl from Canada who had epilepsy and wanted people to get talking about the condition.

Epilepsy is most commonly diagnosed in children and in people over 65. According to the Epilepsy Society “there are over 60 million people with epilepsy in the UK, so around 1 in 100 people.”

Some famous people who have had epilepsy include the Roman Emperor Julius Caesar and the artist Vincent Van Gogh. More recently the actor Danny Glover, Rabbi Lionel Blue and rugby player Dean Ryan.

Epilepsy is a neurological condition - which means it affects the brain. It is also a physical condition because the body is affected when someone has a seizure. The Greek philosopher Hippocrates (460-377 BC) was the first person to think that epilepsy starts in the brain. There are many different causes (reasons) why someone might develop epilepsy. Sometimes a cause for epilepsy can be found (for example a head injury) but sometimes the person’s epilepsy starts ‘out of the blue’ and the cause cannot be found.

Living with epilepsy

Having seizures, or being told “you have epilepsy”, can affect people in many aspects of their life. Epilepsy is a condition that can negatively affect an individuals quality of life. For most people, seizures become well controlled (they still have epilepsy but the medication is stopping the seizures) and so it has little impact on them. For others, seizures may take longer to become controlled or may not respond to treatment. Epilepsy might have a greater impact on them, and they may need support and help with work, education, or daily life.

  • Driving: If you drive, one immediate effect of having a seizure is that they have to stop driving. This is true for all types of seizures, and whether you have a diagnosis of epilepsy or not. For many people, this can have a big impact on their life and it may be very difficult or upsetting.
  • Work and employment: Having epilepsy does not necessarily stop someone from doing the job they want, but there are some issues which can affect them at work.
  • Women and epilepsy: Some issues around epilepsy and its treatment are specific to women and do not apply in the same way to men. These include links between epilepsy and hormones, puberty, contraception, pregnancy and the menopause.
  • Sport and leisure: To live full and active lives, and look after our physical and emotional wellbeing, we all need time to rest, relax and exercise. How we spend our leisure time is important and individual to us all, whether or not we have epilepsy. For leisure activities, you need to consider what risk the activity involves as well as how the epilepsy affects you. For example, If people have seizures where you lose consciousness this needs to be factored into any leisure activities that they take part in.

At Anthony Collins Solicitors we support the work of the Epilepsy Society to raise awareness about epilepsy because we recognize the huge impact that it can have on people’s lives. However, if you have epilepsy that you think was triggered by an accident that was not your fault or medical negligence, you may have grounds to make a compensation claim. We understand that many people prefer not to have to make a claim after suffering an injury but often it is a necessity because of the impact the injury has on your health, family and finances. We work with you to make sure we understand your needs and how we can support you to rebuild your life. We do not focus solely on money - we know financial security is important but rehabilitation, getting the right care at home after leaving the hospital, difficulties with applying for, or receiving, state benefits and the impact upon employment and family are all equally important. We can offer a broad, supportive service and involve a wider team to help on many of these and other related issues where appropriate.

For more information

If you would like to discuss a potential claim please contact Stephanie Moustache who will be happy to speak to you on an initial free, no obligation basis.