Epileptics Can Handle the Pressure

New research findings from Dr. Shlomo Moshe of Tel Aviv University show that occupational stress has no effect at all on the incidence of epilepsy attacks. The research also gives physicians and employers important information to assess the health and safety of prospective employees who suffer from the disease.

It especially benefits those who have been seizure-free for a long period of time, because indicators show they are likely to stay seizure-free.

“People are prejudiced against epileptics, who learn how hide their condition very well,” says Dr. Moshe. “It becomes a problem when they’re trying to get work, because most employers avoid hiring epileptics. But occupational physicians have been asking for years, ‘What are the real risks?’ Our new study provides the answer.”

The largest of its kind ever conducted, Dr. Moshe’s study, recently reported in the journal Epilepsia, surveyed over 300,000 people with no history of epilepsy and compared them to a sample of 16,000 epileptics.

“We proved with very high levels of predictability that we can pinpoint the chances of a person having another seizure,” says Dr. Moshe, who is also a practicing physician at Maccabi Healthcare Services, an occupational health clinic in Tel Aviv. “For example, if we see that someone had their last attack as a child, we can show that their chances for a full remission of epilepsy are quite high.”

Over a period of three years, the researchers in the Israeli study compared the rate of seizures to the types of duties each group of subjects was assigned to perform ― manual labor, combat fighting, or office work.

“The type of assignment didn't affect a person’s chance of having a seizure at all. The biggest predictor of recurrence is time - when the last seizure struck. Those that had seizures more than five years ago have little to worry about today,” Dr. Moshe advises.

MEDICA.de; Source: Tel Aviv University