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Epilepsy Surgery Helps 5-Year-Old Boy Reclaim His Childhood

A team of specialists at Fortis Malar Hospital recently gave 5 year old Master Maitreyo Dutta, a new lease of life. The child was suffering from Epilepsy from the age of two and not responding to medication.  The doctors performed epilepsy surgery in an effort to improve the life of the ailing boy and his parents were losing hope. The team of doctors at Fortis Malar included Dr. Dinesh Nayak, HOD Neurology, Dr. V Sathish Kumar, Consultant Neuro Physician, Dr. Malcolm Jeyaraj, Consultant Neuro Physician, Dr. Ravi Mohan Rao, Consultant Neurosurgeon, Dr. Pal, Consultant Neuro Anesthetists, and Dr. Arul, Neurosurgeon.

Born preterm, the child suffered a brain hemorrhage which partially damaged the right side of the brain. At 2 ½ years he began experiencing seizures that occurred once a month. Seizure episodes usually lasted about 1-2 hours, requiring hospitalisation and intensive care treatment. Despite the use of appropriate medication, the seizures returned every month.

An MRI scan revealed scarring of the right frontal region.  While the whole right half of the brain showed abnormal epileptic activity, the result of Video-EEG showed the seizures appearing to arise from the right frontal region.  PET-CT scan – a test that gives information about the metabolic activity of the brain, revealed that only the right frontal lobe was abnormal, concordant with the MRI abnormality.

On January 20, 2012, a team of surgeons, neurologists, neurophysiologists and neuroanesthetists performed the surgery. Dr. Dinesh Nayak, Consultant Neurologist said “The Brain Functions Were Monitored Throughout The Operation. The Area In The Brain Controlling The Hand And Leg Movement Was Identified By Means Of Brain Cortical Stimulation. This Is Crucial, Since This Region Needs To Be Preserved. Damage To This Area Can Result In Permanent Paralysis Of The Limbs.”

“Epilepsy Is One Of The Commonest Neurological Conditions, With A Prevalence Rate Of 0.5% And An Incidence Rate Of 0.05%. Extrapolating These Figures To The Indian Population, There Are Over 6 Million Patients With Epilepsy In The Country. Epilepsy Affects All Age Groups And All Socio-Economic Strata. The Highest Incidence Is In Childhood And Early Adulthood. This Has Significant Impact On The Psychosocial, Educational And Emotional Functioning Of The Individual And The Family. By Treating These Patients Early, Before They Develop Handicap, We Can Restore Their Quality Of Life. They Can Get Back To Studies, Get Employed, Get Married And Lead Normal Lives And Contribute To Society.” added Dr. Dinesh Nayak

An epileptic seizure is caused by a sudden burst of electrical activity in a part of the brain, which then spreads to other parts of the brain producing various manifestations like jerking of the limbs with frothing at the mouth, abnormal behaviour and automatisms, depending on the region of the brain involved in the epileptic process. Seizures can be focal-involving only one area of the body, or generalized-involving the whole body. If consciousness is preserved during the seizures, it is called ‘simple’ and if consciousness is lost it becomes ‘complex’.  Epilepsy is a heterogeneous disorder ranging from a benign or self-limiting condition such as ‘Benign Rolandic Epilepsy’ to a devastating condition such as ‘Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome’. Therefore, mere diagnosis of epilepsy is insufficient. It is important to characterize the nature of the epileptic syndrome, so as to prognosticate and counsel the parents and the patient about the condition.

“Our Child Has Been Suffering Since He Was Two And A Half Years Old. We Were Helpless To See Him Have About Recurrent Uncontrolled Seizures Every Month. There Was A Time When He Took Five Medicines A Day, But Nothing Seemed To Have Any Impact. We Weren’t Aware That Surgery Was An Option For A Long Time. It Strengthened Our Hope In His Recovery. Thankfully This Surgery Has Made A Tremendous Change In Our Son’s Life. He Now Uses Lesser Medication; Is Alert And Playful As Every 5 Year Old Deserves To Be. My Advice To Families Undergoing Similar Circumstance To Always Stay Positive And That In Today’s Modern Era Where Medical Science Has Improved So Much There Is A Possible Solution” says Mr. Samik Dutta, (father).

“Maitreyo Feared Climbing Stairs Due To His Weakness And Fear Of A Fall, But Now He Has Overcome His Fear And Climbs Up All By Himself, The Surgery Has Changed My Son’s Life And Helped Him Regain His Confidence” Says Mr. Dutta

The surgery was completed in 5 hours, and Maitreo had an uneventful postoperative period. He was discharged after 5 days and is now seizure-free.

The Same coverage appeared in the below News Articles

1. Deccan Chronicle

2. New Indian Express

3. News Today

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