In news– International Epilepsy Day (IED) was observed on 14th February 2022.
About International Epilepsy Day (IED)-
- IED promotes awareness of epilepsy in more than 120 countries each year.
- Every year on the second Monday of February people join together to celebrate and highlight the problems faced by people with epilepsy, their families and carers.
- The Day is organized jointly by the International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE) and the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE).
What is Epilepsy?
- It is a central nervous system (neurological) disorder in which brain activity becomes abnormal, causing seizures or periods of unusual behavior, sensations and sometimes loss of awareness.
- It is a chronic noncommunicable disease of the brain that affects people of all ages.
- The risk of premature death in people with epilepsy is up to three times higher than for the general population.
- It is characterized by recurrent seizures, which are brief episodes of involuntary movement that may involve a part of the body (partial) or the entire body (generalized) and are sometimes accompanied by loss of consciousness and control of bowel or bladder function.
- Seizure episodes are a result of excessive electrical discharges in a group of brain cells.
- Seizures can also vary in frequency, from less than one per year to several per day.
- One seizure does not signify epilepsy (up to 10% of people worldwide have one seizure during their lifetime) and Epilepsy is defined as having two or more unprovoked seizures.
- Epilepsy is not contagious.
- Although many underlying disease mechanisms can lead to epilepsy, the cause of the disease is still unknown in about 50% of cases globally.
- The causes of epilepsy are divided into the following categories: structural, genetic, infectious, metabolic, immune and unknown.
- Epilepsy is usually treated by medication and in some cases by surgery, devices or dietary changes.
- Nearly 80% of people with epilepsy live in low- and middle-income countries.
- It is estimated that up to 70% of people living with epilepsy could live seizure- free if properly diagnosed and treated.
The International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE)-
- The IBE is an incorporated international non-for-profit organization started in 1961, in accordance with law and registered in the District of Columbia, USA.
- Its members are from both the lay public and a professional background.
- The organization often collaborates with the International League Against Epilepsy to increase understanding about epilepsy.
- The Bureau is the recognised international umbrella body representing national epilepsy organizations that have a specific interest in improving the social condition and quality of life of people with epilepsy and their carers.
The International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE)-
- ILAE was founded in 1909 and is an organization of more than 120 national chapters.
- Its goal is to improve the lives of people with epilepsy through research.
- They run the medical journals Epilepsia, Epilepsia Open, and Epileptic Disorders.