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jcroper

Epilepsy and Radio Waves

Hi all,

I have a bizarre-sounding question (at least to me), stemming from a few bizarre experiences. Question first:

Is anyone aware of whether radio waves can influence epilepsy?

About a year ago I was in an airport waiting for my flight and all of the sudden I started having heavy auras. No full-blown seizures (I have tonic-clonic), but auras every minute or so. Now I work in an EEG lab with a communications tower directly above and I've experienced the same thing several times. The signal strength is strong enough to mess with our recordings sometimes. So...

I figure the two have in common especially strong radio waves. Has anyone ever been influenced by radio waves before?

Comments

Re: Epilepsy and Radio Waves

For some reason, the website doesn't seem to be working properly.  Email me at pfj@pfjohnson with a copy of your post and "musicology" and I'll explain...     Phylis Feiner Johnson    www.epilepsytalk.com

Re: Epilepsy and Radio Waves

Believe it or not there's a certain epilepsy called:

Musicogenic Epilepsy

This is a form of reflexive epilepsy in which a seizure is triggered by music or specific frequencies. Sensitivity to music varies from person to person.  Some people are sensitive to a particular tone from a voice or instrument. Others are sensitive to a particular musical style or rhythm. Still others are sensitive to a range of noises.

Try keeping a diary to see if this trigger is consistent and note anything else that you may perceive as a trigger.      Phylis Feiner Johnson   www.epilepsytalk.com

Re: Epilepsy and Radio Waves

I have TLE from a traumatic brain injury. Last November at the Portland Airport the security guards made me go through the new "AIT - millimeter screening machine."
I was not reassured when they said it is perfectly safe for everyone, FDA approved.
They would not do a pat-down. After I entered the cylinder, standing straight ahead, arms up two things happened: 1. A strobe flash; 2. a vertical bar swept passed my field of vision.
I had immediate prodome, was unable to move, and total orientation confusion x4.
I needed assistance to come out of the machine. I remained disoriented and on the plane began to have flashbacks of my original head injury. I had significant mental confusion for months and have not yet regained my status level.

I would like to knwo if you have had other TBI people with this AIT problem or know anything about this machine or the radiowave (sic) likeness.

Thank you.

Re: Epilepsy and Radio Waves

If it was the active-type scanner I'm not surprised that it triggered problems. It emits signal at a specific frequency, then essentially reads the reflection. I believe they don't require any passengers to use them at any airports in the US, but it wouldn't hurt to get a note from your doc in case they really press you on it. Sorry to hear that the effects have lasted so long. It seems to me that this sensitivity to EM frequencies ought to be classified separately from musicogenic epilepsy, and I wonder if there is another term.

I had multiple TBIs that brought on my epilepsy, though it's not TLE. I've never had trouble with the airport scanners (of course, never say never, right?), but I'm convinced that radio waves at certain frequencies and amplitudes can significantly reduce my body's resistance to seizures. Sounds like this is what happened to you as well. I'm no longer working in the EEG lab I mentioned, now in a large hospital instead. Fortunately my offices is somehow fairly well-shielded (can't even get AM/FM radio in here), but there are places in the hospital I avoid whenever possible.

I don't know what exactly about the radio waves sets me off, but I've ruled out every other risk factor (even taken heavy doses of my rescue meds) and this is the one thing that's left. It's weird, but I guess when you consider that electrical activity in the brain occurs at varying frequencies, it doesn't seem entirely impossible.

Re: Epilepsy and Radio Waves

 Hello. This is not a bizarre question at all. I have noticed since we have installed a router in our home, that my two daughters begun (began?) having seizures. I believe the radio frequency of the router messes with their own internal electric pulses. Because this is new, and there is not alot of documentation on this, I am finding that everyone (doctors, neurologists, family, smarter broadband) disagree with my opinion. I don 't care, I know what I know. My daughters DID not have this problem before we put the router in the house. Everyone else who has or suspects the radio waves/computer contribute to seizures, please stay strong and keep documenting what you discover about it. We who are documenting this problem are the forefront of this new condition. Stick to your guns, and keep at it. I know we are moving the router to a different part of the house to minimize exposure. We are also turning it off when no one is using the computer. Thanks to all for posting! God Bless.

 

Re: Epilepsy and Radio Waves

This is a form of reflexive epilepsy in which a seizure is triggered by music or specific frequencies. Sensitivity to music varies from person to person.

 

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