Epilepsy Love

By: Tina Stein
By: Tina Stein

In this very doctor's office, Brenda and Lance Arnold learned they were meant to be.

"She was sitting across from me and I said hello Brenda and she said do I know you and that's when things got started," Lance Arnold says.

Married just six months, the Arnolds share more than their hearts. They both suffer from epileptic seizures and are resistant to any such medications.

"My tongue gets hard and my lips quiver and sometimes I shake," says Brenda Arnold.

"I had an abscent seizure and went through a plate glass door," Lance says.

After having a-half dozen seizures a day, they decided to get a Vagus Nerve Simulation implanted into their chest. It's like a pacemaker that sends mild electrical impulses to the brain. It's programed to turn on for 30 seconds every three minutes. But if a seizure erupts while it's turned off, it can be jump-started with a magnet.

When someone with a VNS implant is about to have a seizure, they swipe this magnet across their chest and it stops the seizure in its' tracks.

"There is no post seizure drowsiness or lethargy or anything like that," says Dr. Farouk Kahn.

"The VNS has greatly improved my quality of life," Lance says. "It's really been a god send," Brenda says.

The Arnolds now only have a few auras and the occasional seizure a month. And credits a magnetic attraction for their improving health.

Dr. Kahn says about 35-percent of epileptic patients resist epilepsy medications, qualifying them for the implant. The VNS is good for about ten years, then the battery must be replaced.


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