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Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi,

I'm new here and still working with a preliminary diagnosis for my 6yo son. His neurologist says he's having complex partial seizures and we're scheduled for an EEG tomorrow, and an MRI at a future time pending clearance from the insurance co. No meds yet.

My son has is extremely bright and verbal, and he's doing great academically in school. But his behavior can be really difficult. He has poor impulse control, has trouble keeping quiet, and can be rather oppositional (in a cheerful-but-very-annoying way...he never has tantrums and he's doesn't get angry easily). He does not seem to have ADD symptoms. He's been sent to the principal's office a couple of times, and he's only in Kindergarten!

The thing that I find really chilling is that his K teacher said to me, "I find that the Ben I get in the morning is the Ben I'm going to have all day." as if to say some days he's in control, and some days he's not! I've observed this too -- it's as if some days he just can't keep himself together no matter what! I can tell you that some of his worst behaved days have also been days he's had seizures.

I don't want to make excuses for his behavior, but before I bring it up with his neurologist, I'm wondering if anyone has any insight on whether a connection exists?

Comments

My son is 13 and has been

My son is 13 and has been diagnosed with a rare form absence status epilepsy. His seizures show no symptoms until the seizure has lasted for hours! The only warning we had was he started acting only tired at first then gradually he started acting confused and from there for 24 hours he didn't know what year it was, where he went to school, or even what grade he was in etc. his motors skills were perfect and he talked to everyone normal the entire time, he just couldn't answer certain questions. The hospital kept him overnight and gave him fluids and in 24 hours he slowly started remembering and they said he was good and sent us home. We know now that he was having a constant seizure the ENTIRE TIME of his confusion! Almost 3 months later he begins having the same symptoms when I woke him up for his 2nd day of school. we are sent for an EEG, which revealed at 10 am he was actually having what the neurologist referred to as the worst EEG he had seen) we then were sent to a different children's hospital where they observed him until 8:00pm, all this time my son passes every test, he is talking and his motor skills are completely normal! They finally begin his EEG around 9:00pm. It reveals he is still in seizure! They are blown away. Say they have never seen an absence case like his and they quickly gave him a big dose of adavan which immediately stops the seizure and he is able to regain his memory immediately. Does anyone have a child who has these same symptoms? His neuro doctor ordered a brain glucose test, but when we went for a follow up last week they said the test had been canceled and they had no idea what happened? When I asked if they were going to draw his blood and re do the test, they said that his medicine was controlling the seizures so far so they didn't feel the need to do the test!  I need advice and some direction. I searched further; visited epilepsy websites, blogs. I find info about someone having the same symptoms. I was really determined. Fortunately for me, I stumbled on a testimony of someone who had epilepsy for several years and was cured through Herbal medication. I read awesome stories of people whose condition were worse. I was not a fan of Herbal Medication, because I once believed that they have not researched it enough. But due to numerous testimonies  I was more than willing to try it…. I contacted the doctor, and my son used the herbal medication. It became a miracle for my son free from rare form absence status epilepsy within 3 months. The herbal medication worked without any trace of side effects on my son…. totally free.  I decided to share my son story to tell people out there, that there is a hope for those with epilepsy using herbal medicine, and anyone who suffers from seizures can be cured. 

Greeting My name is sarah

Greeting My name is sarah umah from toronto i want to testify how i was cure from epilesy by great ezaza walter, i have been suffering from epilepsy since i was 15 i have try all means to get it cure but there was no positive result and my parents have both try their best and have spent all the money they have to try to make sure i am cure from the shameful illness but it seems as if all effort was wasted. and i have given up because it usually disgrace me always and i wanted to take my life because it was so shameful for me until i came across this email greatezazawalter@gmail.com where someone testify that he was cure from epilepsy by great ezaza walter i never believe but i decide to contact him but i was very scared if he is not a scam,i took courage to contact him and told him my problem and he told me that he could cure me from epilepsy within 7 days with his roots and herbs i never believed he gave me and instruction which i followed and today i am free from epilepsy all thanks to great ezaza walter for taking this shame away from me.if you are passing through the same problem which i pass through i will advice you contact great ezaza walter vis email:greatezazawalter@gmail.com because only him can help you get cure your epilepsy completely with his roots and herbs.

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Epilepsy can go hand and hand with some behavioral issues. My son had his worse behaviors in school on days when he had seizures in sleep. He still has more trouble with impulse control on days he is post ictal.

I hope the EEG and other tests give you clear answers. I try to teach my son, now 14, that no matter what, he is still responsible for his behavior. If he is having an off day, he needs to own up to bad behavior. The world will not allow it and excuse it for a bad day. I also try and get him to separate himself from issues when he can. Like go to his room, walk away when he is PI and feels like reacting back or at least going after to try and clear things up if he over reacted.....

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Wow, thanks. I realize now, reading your post, that I kind of didn't want to know the answer...sigh...this is so hard to take.

Kayakmom, when did you son start having seizures? And how long is "post ictal?" a day after a seizure? More?

Thanks,

Jen

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi and welcome to the site
I can tell you that the 4 Sz that my daughter has had have all come with changes behavior forhand from a whole day to hours. They have mostly been brought on by tiredness and or stress. I know that one time her reading teacher sent a note home to say she seemed off and quite and couldnt remember her spelling words that she knew the day before then that nite bam her first Sz. I dont know if that helps you in your quest for info. Wishing you all the best.
Always Pam

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Pam, thanks so much for your post. Your story about your daughter rings true with me. Ben told his teacher and the people in the school office, when he had his first seizure, but nobody believed him. (Including me!). And he got in SO much trouble that day, both at school and at home! I'm trying not to blame myself...how could I know what he meant when he said he felt "funny in his head"?

In a way it's good to have something in the way of an explanation, but it breaks my heart that the seizures and the personality can be so interconnected.

Thanks again,

Jen

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi Jen,

My 22 year old daughter has had seizures since she was 9. She still has them today. I have almost always noticed some change in behaviour (sometimes slight, sometimes not so slight), both pre and post seizure. She suffers from generalized (gran-mal) seizures.

I suffer from simple and complex partial seizures, and sometimes wake up knowing, 'it's gonna be a seizure type of day', just by my mood or how my body feels.

Here's a good link to read about the influence of seizures on behaviour:

http://professionals.epilepsy.com/page/behavioral_influence.html

Good luck with you son,
Barbie

***************************************
"We are each of us angels with only one wing, and we can fly only by embracing each other." -lucian de crescenzo

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi JenCA

I'm also new here. I have an 8yr old son who has had seizures since he was an infant. We thought they were febrile, until he had a "drop attack". He hasn't been diagnosed with epilpsy, but the neuro says he is prone to have seizure or has a seizure disorder. He also has developmental delays and has been diagnosed with disruptive behavior disorder. This child can't get a good nights sleep and sometimes wakes with "night terrors". He had been seizure free for 18 months since taking Zonegran, but we noticed an increase in his behavior problems. Recently, he had 2 episodes of breakthrough seizures and the neuro wanted to increase the dose of Zonegran. This increase has caused his behaviors to worsen. My wife and I are having a hard time with these behaviors and the school is now concerned because he loses control more often. We would like to change his meds, but aren't sure what is a good option.

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Barbie,

Thanks so much for the link. It was great information -- a real eye-opener for me. Again, though, it falls under the category of things I "kinda don't want to know" because I can only deal with a little at a time before I freak out.

We had the EEG today. My son did very well during the test, but of course we won't know anything until we go in for the follow-up appointment next week. The technician was unable/unwilling to share anything about what he observed. Reminded me of how frustratingly silent the OB ultrasound techs were during my pregnancies!

Dad43PA, I'm so sorry to hear about your son. Is he in a regular public school, or is he in a different kind of program? I'm getting so burned out from talking to the teachers in my son's school. It's really starting to wear me out.

Jen

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Jen,

Our son is in public school. He is in a regular 1st grade classroom, but gets pulled out for speech and occupational therapy. He also spends a lot of time with the special ed teacher. His developmental delays cause him to be behind in his school work. The special ed teacher has a hard time getting him to complete his work so it is sent home for us to struggle with him to try to get it done. We get a behavior report sent home from school each day. Usually the report says that he swore or hit another student or tore up his papers. I think that the pressure to do work that he has trouble mastering causes more frustration and more bad behaviors. He gets lunch detention almost every day and we try to discipline him at home, but nothing phases him. It seems as if it is something that he has no control over. The school doesn't understand that and we are wore out at home as well.

Chip

Hi Chip, Gosh, I can feel

Hi Chip,

Gosh, I can feel for you and what your family is going through. Dealing with a school system that does not seem to work well with families of challenged children is very, very difficult. I have a daughter who is 22 with epilepsy, and a 24 year old son who had other issues in school. What saved us was a child psychologist that we worked with, who became a professional advocate for our children in the school systems. Both of the kids saw her on a regular basis, and when we held meetings at the schools (ARD's), she would attend and advocate for better individual educational plans for our children. She knew the school system inside and out, knew the childrens' rights, and knew the struggles that both the school and the family were dealing with. With her help, we were able to find a workable solution for all parties.

Each and every child is entitled to a quality education, and the school must do all possible to provide such. If there is any way you can find some sort of advocate for your child, besides yourselves, it worked wonders for us.

Also, make sure you understand the IEP process, as pubished by the US Department of Education. it's located at http://www.ed.gov/parents/needs/speced/iepguide/index.html

I wish I had some easy answers for you, but I do have hope, and I send you my prayers and blessings,

Best wishes,
Barbie

***************************************
"We are each of us angels with only one wing, and we can fly only by embracing each other." -lucian de crescenzo

Re: Hi Chip, Gosh, I can feel

Barbie,

Thanks for the website. We are looking into changing his meds and also getting his advocate involved to get the school to provide better solutions for his education. It is very frustrating dealing with the demands of a special needs child and have to fight the school for any help.
thanks again,
Chip

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi everyone!

It certainly can be frustrating reading about possible brain/behavior relationships but it's more frustrating not knowing any links or what to do. Advocating for your child in school is easier when you have as much info as possible about child's strengths and weaknesses/challenges. If not done yet, ask the neurologist to get neuropsychology testing so you can better understand what is going on. This can be of enormous help to teachers as well. The type of core testing done in schools is usually not as comprehensive and won't pick up many of the issue identified in neuropsych testing. Then ask neuropsychologist to give recommendations on how to manage the behavioral issues. For example, a child who is having attention or disruptive behaviors may be helped more by changes in environment, more structure, or positive discipline measures, rather than detention that takes away any breaks for the child!

Take a look at this links and the related content to see if helpful.
http://www.epilepsy.com/epilepsy/social_thinking.html

Also, take a look at the book, Navigating the Special Education Maze. Can't remember the author, but I'll look it up for you..

Also remember to take care of yourselves!

Hope some of this helps. Take care,
Epilepsy.com Resource Specialist

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi Jen!

My daughter has been having grand mal and petit mal (good old fashion terms) for two years. During those two years we have learned alot on predicting when one is coming on. If Blakely starts acting up, as in screaming, ill tempered and irrational and hits and kicks, and bites, and is just pure horrible and into everything...look out! I seizure is on the way within 12-48 hours. It never fails anymore, if she is experiencing what is typical terrible twos behavior x10, then she is gonna seizure, and she is almost six! So yes, bad behavior is linked with the seizures. Another thing to look for is speech changes. Blakely's speech will be slurred and stuttery and sometimes she struggles for words and her thoughs. SO you might find that too. Good luck and hang in there!

Sonya

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

I am new here, and in need of alot of help.

My son is 3 years old. He had his first seizure last October of 05. I didn't know what was going on with him and thought he was dying in front of me. That day he seemed to be very aggressive. Hitting me and biting me. Acting very abnormal. When we got home he had his seizure. He was rushed to the hospital and they told me that kids just have seizures and he would never have another one. Well, in November (05) he had 4 in one day and was once again rushed to the er. This time they kept him. His MRI and CT scans came back normal, but the EEG came back and said that there were seizure activities. The Dr put him on Depakote SPR 125mg one pill in the morning and two at night. Now I had noticed behavioral problems with him before the seizures in him, but the Depakote seemed to make them worse by 10 fold. I told the Dr that he was not sleeping at night after taking the meds. He told me to change it to two in the morning and one at night. Still it didn't work. The Dr said to give him two in the morning and two at night, because Depakote is also used for bipolar and ADHD. Still nothing. Actually he got worse. And then in December he had another seizure that lasted longer than 20 minutes. That was the worst. After the seizure and when we got home from the hospital, he didn't know simple things like what milk was, peoples names, etc. The Dr then upped his dose to three in the morning and three at night. Now that is 750mg of medicine. I didn't think it was possible, but he got worse. He bit me so hard on my shoulder that he almost broke skin. He kicks me and hits me. I have not seen a seizure since December, but I think he is still having them. Sometimes he will have the blank stare like the Absense seizures, but I will call his name once or twice and he will respond. He has had bruises on his forhead and doesn't know how he got them and never came to me crying that he was hurt. One of the other things he did when he had a seizure was wet himself. There are nights that he will have wet the bed and I will wake him up to change him and he wakes right up (he does not seem postictal like the first three seizures). I don't know if I am crazy or paranoid. His Dr doesn't really seemed to listen to me. I took him to a psych Dr. and he told me that my son has ADHD. I have tried to see if there was any link between the two. I have not found anything yet. I am very new to epilepsy and I have done as much research as possible. I am very frustrated, and very confused. His Dr also said he has (not sure if I am spelling it right) Idopathic generalized seizure disorder. When I looked it up it said that it is a disorder of unknown origin. It sounded so basic. If anyone here can help me I would appreciate it. I am almost at my wits end.

Michele

Re: seizure medication and behaviors

Hi Michele:

 My son has a seizure disorder and has MR and ADHD.  He started getting several small seizures daily when he was only 2 years old and his Doc. put him on Depakote.  Just as your son got very aggressive and was waking at night, my son did as well.  He would destroy his room and windows he would bang on and bite me really hard even in the middle of the night.  You know, sometimes this medicine works great for some people.  I know some kids on it and doing very well.  But other people it is very toxic to their body and that is why your son and my son was so uncontrollable on it.  I finally, after 4 years demanded my son be taken off from that because I felt it was making him moody and aggressive.  the doctor didn't agree with me but he did take him off it and put him on something else.  Lamictal at that time.  and that worked much better.  later we started to see seizures and we switched him to Keppra.  I know you can read bad things about that too, but you know what that med has the least side effects, thats one that they put even babies on if needed.  But then again, some people will not agree with it and think it's bad for everyone and thats just not so.  My son is now 12 years old and his seizures are under control.  Go with your gut instinct and if you think a med is not working well then demand to try something else until your son feels good on one.  Good luck to you!!!

Anita

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi Michele,
I am sorry for the troubles you are having with your son. It is possible the biting.. could be him in the middle of a seizure. For sometimes we do weird things. I have seizures myself, and I have cursed and said mean things during a seizure. Have you asked him why he did? Does he remember?

Here is the info I found.

"idiopathic (this means the seizure has no identifiable cause)
usually beginning between ages 5 and 20
can occur at any age
no other neurologic abnormalities present
often a family history of epilepsy or seizures
congenital defects (present from before birth) and perinatal injuries (occur near the time of birth)
seizures usually beginning in infancy or early childhood"

http://www.epilepsy.com/medications/b_depakote_intro.html

take care
Lisa
http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/epilepsyapproach/

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi andrewsmom, I too have a son with seizures. His are called Rolandic Seizures. I have had problems with getting the doctors to listen to me, too. I have also been told my son is adhd, but i am not sure if that is true, since his behavior is not consistent. I just wanted to tell you that if increasing the dose of his medicine is causing worse side effects, it could be time to try a new medicine. we had the same problem and are still tweaking. we started on trileptal, but had to quit due to rash, then lamictal, which was ok at first, but at higher doses, we also got worse moods and behavoir. we are now on zonegran, and are watching. i actually think the best we had was when he was weaning off lamictal and "weaning on" zonegran. when i mentioned this to the neurologist his comment was maybe we should do lower doses of both instead of one or the other. also, if you feel the doctor isn't listening, try another doctor, we changed because of that. i went to americastopdoctors.com and bestdoctors.com and found a pediatric neurologist that i like. i wish you the best of luck.

Re: Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hello everyone. My daughter was diagnosed with Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy last year. She had her first seizure in school about 2 weeks before her 13th birthday. We have alot of problems with anger management. She has been on Keppra, but is now on Lamictal and Zonegran. I haven't been able to tell any differences in her angry spells,whether on Keppra or Lamictal and Zonegran. Actually our neurologist thinks she may have a problem with depression and wants to add Zoloft to her meds. We go back to the neurologist in a few days and we'll go from there.

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

Hi Michele

I am new to this whole thing. I was reading your blog and it is very similar to my situation(read my story under "camis blog"). I am just interested in how things are going since you experienced this 6 months before me. How are the meds working? Cami

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

my 6 yr old has behavior and aggression issues, along with lying alot. my neuro is trying to diagnose him with ADHD but i dont think that is it. he has always been an angry child but the meds he is on i think is making it worse. DONT LET YOU DR. PUT HIM ON KEPPRA! i think that is a majority of dylan's problem.

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

I have wondered the same thing.. I asked our ped. and he said that they are related.. He said it could even be from a seizure and that is just the part of the brain that it is effecting...Our nero says it can be related and that the meds can cause it also.

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

I know what you mean. My son has Juvenile absence epilepsy, something that is taking some getting used to. He is finally under contol with epilim, but his behaviour and language is terrible at times and it is difficult to known whether it is the condition, medication or just him. I'm having problems coming to terms with the fact that he is not academically like his brother and sister, having said that he's great at sport and the kindest individual ever, so it's not all bad. One minute it all seems okay and other times it seems so sad. I'm probably being pathetic, but it gets to you sometimes. My heart goes out to all in a worse position than me. xxx

Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

JenCA-I hope you have made progress with the school & your son's treatment. My 4yo daughter has complex partial seizures and we've noticed some behaviour issues - mostly as a side effect of meds. I also have a 10yo with diagnosed ADHD who has similar behaviour issues as your son. He was diagnosed in kindergarten after spending a large amount of time in the principal's office. Just like epilepsy, there are many misconceptions in the public about ADHD. My son has been tested for the gifted program and is an advanced reader and is is in an advanced math class. Many boys have difficulty adjusting to the restrictions of school, maturity level and boredom of bright children can all play a part. Advocating for you son by getting involved in helping to solve the issues he is dealing with will help both of you in the long run. I found the school to be a lot more accepting and willing to work with us as I became more involved. My communication with them helped my son excel and I went from making excuses to being part of the solution. Good luck.

Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

I am also new to this site and my three year old had two seizures. First on Christmas Eve of last year and second during the second week of May of this year. Her behavior issues have been so unpredictable. She was on phenobarbital and it made her hyper. She is now on Trileptal but she complains alot about her stomach. I find that her behavior is worse. She is more unreasonable that she has ever been. I was diagnosed with bipolar six months ago and at first I thought that perhaps that she may be bipolar as well.

My husband and I have been too at our wits end and majorly burned out. At school she uses bad words such as "shut up" and disrupts the class to the point where the parents of the children she victimize on a daily basis has given my husband and I the silent treatment. I have the enourmous guilt for her condition and I feel so bad that she is so small and has to suffer. How does a parent overcome that or perhaps cope with that feeling of wanting to sink into depression? I want to give up but giving up will indicate giving up on my child.

Her two seizures were during bedtime and so now she is no longer trusted to sleep alone. Good part about her behavior issues is that she is getting speech therapy and a psychotherapist will to come to her school to have one-one sessions with her to work on her coping skills. She is at least a year and a half behind cognitively.

Where do parents go to find support groups?

Re: Re: Re: Seizures connected with behavior issues?

kksmom,
My heart goes out to you and your little one. I wish I had advice to give, but being bipolar myself as well as having epilepsy, I realize what you need the most is one on one support as well as knowing you, along with your child, aren't the only ones going through this. Try this link to find a support group close to you.

http://epilepsyfoundation.org/aboutus/AffiliateLookup.cfm

Finding the right medication sometimes takes time which adds to the frustration. Other parents not realizing the frustration your husband and you feel already, doesn't help. And at the center is your child, feeling all the frustration around her which adds to her acting out. I'm 47 and still react to others frustration around me.

If you can locate a support group close to you, please have your husband join you. You both need that outlet. I wish you all the best! Take care!

-Spiz

Thanks Spiz, Things seem to

Thanks Spiz,

Things seem to be looking up in my household. My three year old is still on Trileptal and so far, no seizures. I received the results of her neuropsych test and I found them quite interesting. The neuropsychologist recommended some books to my husband and I and so far I read one and started using the methods in my home with my 3-1/2 year old and to help with her behavior. She is the queen of tantrums and can trash a room faster than the tazmanian devil when she does not get her way. Her behavior has gotten so unreasonable that dare I admit that I actually disliked my own flesh and blood. Things are getting better with her behavior though. One of the books the doctor recommended was 1-2-3 Magic, Effective Discipline for Children 2-12. Thomas W. Phelan, PhD

I read this book from cover to cover and I gotta tell you, I started reading it on a thursday evening and begin using it on my children Friday morning. It was hard at first especially with the tazmanian queen, but within three days, my most defiant child seemed to get the picture.

I'm sure each child varies, but things at home are alot more relaxed and I am more relaxed. Get the book and see what it can do for you.
Another book he recommended was " Your Defiant Child, 8 Steps to Better Behavior" Russell A. Barkley, PhD, Christine M. Benton
kksmom

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Seizures connected with

Is he taking meds? How are they working for seizures?

Was he tested for ADD.

take care
Lisa
http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/epilepsyapproach/

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Seizures connected with

Here is sites that can help you. FOr sometimes epilepsy and behavior is related.
check these out.

Aggressive Behavior with Epilepsy
http://www.epilepsy.com/epilepsy/mood_aggression.html

Behavior Problems with Epilepsy
http://www.epilepsy.com/articles/ar_1064604275.html

take care
Lisa
http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/epilepsyapproach/

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