Just a quick update on my beautiful Alex. She had a small breakthrough seizure last December, but we were all under a lot of stress then with my Mom and a new move in gymnastics triggered it. Her medication was increased at that time. Then she had a major Grand Mal seizure in September on her lunch hour from school, in a convenience store … fortunately one of her friends’ dad has epilepsy, so her friend was familiar with seizures & flew into action organizing everyone there and getting Alex out of danger of being hurt too badly. Turns out this one was probably caused by a case of “teenage memory loss” as she didn’t have enough medication in her system to prevent the seizure. She’s had instances of “the feeling”, but fortunately they haven’t developed into full-blown seizures. The EEG run on her one-year checkup shows she still has full-brain involvement, so we continue.
Alex is doing very well in her rhythmic gymnastics. She is on the performing team, and competed in Winnipeg this past July. Her team won their spot to perform in the World Gymnaestrada in Lausanne, Switzerland in July 2011. What a wonderful opportunity! She has also been chosen to be a junior coach to some of the younger teams. She continues to get taller (at 14, she’s now 5’ 9 ½”) and is quite amused by the fact she will soon be looking “down” on her dad.
Now to correct some misinformation - or incomplete information about the seizures. The seizures are called tonic clonic … the tonic part being the pre-seizure part. In Alex’s case, the part where she has the “feeling”, to the point where she loses consciousness & actually starts seizing. In your dogs, this would be the disorientation, panting, pacing … whatever their unusual actions are prior to the seizure. The clonic part is the actual seizure itself, and this is where I was mistaken. The terms Petit Mal and Grand Mal are still used, but within the clonic part of the attack, and determine the strength of the seizure. There are many degrees of clonic, from the standing still & staring off into space for a few seconds, to the full blown seizing including frothing at the mouth, loss of body functions, involvement with anything from one limb to whole body. For humans as well as animals, there is nothing to be done but ensure they are in a safe place where they cannot be hurt by outside influences, or at least as little as possible, be there for them & keep them warm after and let them sleep. I hope I didn’t mislead anyone with the incomplete information I had a year ago!