Stimulation treatments

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There are two types of nerve stimulation which aim to reduce the risk of a seizure occurring and whilst for lots of people this has no effect, for some it can really be life-changing. Deep brain Stimulation therapy aims to control excess electrical activity in the brain using regular electrical impulses to reduce the frequency and severity of seizures. This should not be used as a replacement for anti-epileptic drugs, and it is worth noting that the effects may not be visible straight away, and can, in fact, take years before the person notices a difference.

The other type of brain stimulation is Vagus Nerve Stimulation or VNS. The Vagus Nerves are a pair of nerves that start at the brain and run through the body, and this type of stimulation is seen almost as a pacemaker for the brain. It involves fitting a stimulator to the left Vagus Nerve in the neck and sends regular signals to the brain and although it is not actually known how this treatment works, it has been seen to help control both the number and severity of seizures for many patients. Another benefit of VNS is the fact that the amount of stimulation can be altered manually by each person, therefore if they start to experience their aura, they can potentially pre-empt the seizure and possibly even stop it. Again, new developments into stimulation treatments are ongoing and as more and more research is undertaken, more is becoming known as to the effectiveness of this treatment.