Hi my name is Carrie and I am a young adult living in the UK and was diagnosed with HH in 2013. I am writing this blog to show how easy it is for patients with HH to be misdiagnosed and undergo unnecessary procedures. Thankfully I have turned my life around but it wasn’t easy after such major surgery.
It’s been two years since I underwent a temporal lobectomy. After being diagnosed with temporal lobe epilepsy I felt this was my only chance to be cured of daily seizures. How wrong was I? After the surgery my seizures increased from 10 gelastics seizures daily to every 15 minutes. I couldn’t quite understand if this was normal but my gut instinct was telling me it wasn’t. My neurologist was confused and really didn’t understand why my seizures increased as opposed to decreasing. I was sent for an MRI only to be given the news I was not expecting! My diagnosis was incorrect. I didn’t have the temporal lobe epilepsy with which I have been diagnosed for 31 years. In fact I have HH.
How do you possibly get your head around going through major brain surgery to find out it was […]
Continue reading Introduction and Update from Carrie
Happy New Year to all of our Hope for Hypothalamic Hamartomas Patients & Caregivers!
We realize everyone is busy this time of year, but we are asking you to please take time to enroll in the Rare Epilepsy Network (REN), which is a very important research study that the Hope for HH is participating in with the Epilepsy Foundation. As you will recall, EF and 10 other rare epilepsy groups were awarded $1M grant to establish a registry to better understand HH and other rare epilepsies.
We have committed to enrolling a large number of families and we are below our target. The Epilepsy Foundation will be applying for 3 more years of funding to continue the REN and we need to quickly get our number of registered patients up.
Hope for HH set a goal of 110 patients registered. Only 26 have signed up so far. Please help us meet goals for HH by signing up Today. The survey will take just 45 minutes max. It is broken up into sections and you can complete it over several days. No medical records are required, although you will be asked if you have EEG or MRI reports that can be […]
Continue reading Call to Action for Rare Epilepsy Network for Hypothalamic Hamartoma
by Sue Jackson on November 15, 2014
Faith has been on Zonisamide for a year, we have slowly increased it to the dosage she is on now. 100 mg twice a day. With room for still some more increase.
In seven years this is the best Faith has ever been with her seizures and moods. As i’m writing this she has only had one small gelastic/partial seizure. This is amazing for Faith as her seizure control has never been the best.
We initially started Zonisamide because her seizure pattern changed to an extent that was quite unbearable for her and us. They had become quite long lasting up to 3-5 minutes and stronger in nature. she had also become quite postictal after her seizures sleeping anywhere up to 20-30 minutes after the longer ones.
We were finding that she would have a good spell with each increase initially of about three weeks and then the bigger seizures would start to creep back in. Though with this last increase the good spell seems to be lasting longer which is amazing. I think of it as our wonder drug and just hope that this increase is the one that will finally put […]
Continue reading Making Progress and Call to Action for Laser Ablation Petition
by Angela Donn on November 12, 2014
Despite Eli’s diagnosis, two brain surgeries four months apart 1500 miles from home, and daily seizures, the ketogenic diet has caused us the most stress!
The diet started off with a three day hospital stay at Johns Hopkins Keto Clinic. Here we had classes to help us learn about the diet and how to prepare food. It is hard at first because it goes against conventional thinking. The Ketogenic diet essentially is 92% of calories from fat. So Eli’s first food after fasting for 24 hours was about four bites of chicken, a third of a stick of butter, two pieces of broccoli, and heavy whipping cream. They served it to us and we were like, what are we supposed to do with this butter? So he got mouthfuls of butter with a little chicken. We then knew we were in for something…
So it is really hard to get a handle on the diet which is a 4:1 ratio of four fats for every one protein/carb. We have spent hours upon hours trying to convert a few recipes to get the right ratio within our calorie allotment. We have to measure every […]
Continue reading Eli and the Ketogenic Diet
Hope for Hypothalamic Hamartomas is pleased to announce the exciting news that you’ve been hearing about for the past year. Hope for Hypothalamic Hamartomas, The Epilepsy Foundation and nine other rare epilepsy organizations were awarded a one million dollar grant to launch a rare epilepsy registry!! After months of hard work by the Registry team who have developed a comprehensive questionnaire, the time has come to invite participation by individuals and families with hypothalamic hamartomas.
We would like to challenge every HH patient and caregiver to complete the REN survey so we can better understand what causes HH and how to cure it! Click on the logo link below to enroll and participate in this research.
To encourage even more participation, we challenge each person who completes the questionnaire to challenge three more individuals and post your challenge on the Hope for Hypothalamic Hamartomas Facebook Page.
Click the REN logo below to go to the questionnaire and get started.
And here’s Wendi’s challenge.
This has been an exciting week for the HH community as the television show, The Doctors, featured two families who have children with HH and their experiences with laser ablation surgery. The video clip also includes Dr. Nakaji who performed the laser ablation surgery on both of these individuals and his explanation of the location of the hypothalamic hamartoma as well as how the surgery works to remove the HH.
And if you missed the show, there are clips that are on The Doctors website which are available for viewing. Please click on the link below to see the full program. Or click on the individual links to view individual segments of the program. A brief 30 second commercial is shown before the individual clips.
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Hypothalamic Hamartoma as featured on The Doctors, week of September 9, 2014
Dr. Nakaji http://www.thedoctorstv.com/videos/laser-ablation-surgery-for-brain-tumors History of Patients http://www.thedoctorstv.com/videos/laser-ablation-surgery-for-brain-tumors Patients in Studio http://www.thedoctorstv.com/videos/laser-ablation-surgery-for-brain-tumors