Uncontrolled Seizures tagged posts


Category: Seizures Comments: 28 comments

In a very sad story from California, Armando Gonzales was convicted of second-degree murder last week. I wrote about him before (https://fallingdownfunny.com/2014/02/14/district-attorney-be-afraid-of-epileptics/). Mr. Gonzales had a seizure while driving and hit and killed Ms. Ruth Morales (1).

Yolo County Deputy District Attorney Amanda Zambor was prosecuting this case as what is known in California as a “Watson Murder.” (2)

In 1981, in the California Supreme Court, there was a case known as People V. Watson (ibid). The result of that case was that people who cause a fatality while driving under the influence could from that point be charged with second-degree murder. For this to happen, three conditions need to be met:
1). The death resulted from an intentional act.
2) The natur...

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Category: Uncategorized Comments: 5 comments

I have written several articles about how we need to get the word out so that people better understand epilepsy and seizures. I am not sure it is the police and professionals’ fault that they do not recognize what is happening when they see someone having a seizure. If they have never seen a seizure, how can they be expected to recognize one when it happens. We have a duty to work hard to get them the information and tools that they need. Having said that, I keep reading news stories that boggle my mind.

Incredibly, in Poland last month, a teacher actually strangled a child who was having a seizure (1). Kuba, just 12-years-old, was having an episode when his teacher, Jadwiga Piotrowska, decided that her best course of action in such a situation was to strangle the boy...

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Category: Uncategorized Comments: 9 comments

I had an interesting conversation the other day with my sister-in-law, Ali. She is a “care-giver” in England and she is a regular reader of my blog. She asked, “Why do you always refer to yourself as ‘epileptic?’ You are not epileptic. You have seizures.”

I should point out that Ali has been trained by the English “ETTAD,” or European project to Enable Teachers and Trainers. Their website (1) states “Terminology is important, because words reflect our attitudes and beliefs.” It goes on to state that, “It is dehumanizing to talk of people in terms of a condition. Do not talk about a dyslexic or an epileptic – it is far preferable to say he has dyslexia/ she has epilepsy. (Ibid.)”

It’s a fair point, although, presumably, none of these people are actually living...

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Category: Uncategorized Comments: 10 comments

Once a week I Google “Seizure” and “News” and see what I get. Most of the time, the results are pretty predictable. Someone is touting a new product for epilepsy. Someone is trying to get support for a new medical marijuana bill. Someone makes the local news because some annoying story about how they were mistreated or fired over epilepsy. However, once in a while I find something completely unexpected.

Maggie O’Conner was walking her dog in Cochester, England, when she had a seizure. It happens. As an epileptic I am sympathetic. But the two people who pulled out their iphones to watch her and make fun of her were apparently not so sympathetic (1).

Ms. O’Conner woke up to see the two men filming her...

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Category: Uncategorized Comments: No comments

I have written several articles about people being fired or arrested while having seizures. As a result, I have received several emails from readers and close friends asking: “How can it be legal in the United States of America to fire someone for epilepsy?”

It isn’t. But up until very recently it was. Here’s how it came to happen.

In 1924 sterilizing epileptics was all the rage. Three thousand people were involuntarily sterilized in the United States — 2,500 in California alone (1) based on a system designed by one Harry Laughlin. In a continued effort to get rid of “defective persons,” Virginia sought to follow California’s lead and a seventeen-year-old girl named Carrie Buck was chosen to be the first citizen of that state to be sterilized under the program.


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Category: Uncategorized Comments: No comments

In January of this year, in Connecticut, Robert Marzullo was driving in his car with his sister when he had a seizure and ran into a curb. When the police arrived, he was “slumped over the steering wheel.” The police “gave him to the count of three” to exit the car and then fired a taser into Marzullo’s arm. His sister screamed that Marzullo is epileptic and the officer said, “I know.” The officers claimed that Marzullo still resisted arrest (1).

In Indianapolis, 2013, Randy Lynn had just finished helping his sister clear snow from a sidewalk and he was walking home when he had a seizure. Police saw him and mistook the seizure for being intoxicated. They wrestled to put him into handcuffs, shocked him with a taser and hit him on the head three times (2).

These, sadly, a...

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RIK MAYALL: Falling Down Funny

Category: Uncategorized Comments: No comments

Rik Mayall died yesterday. I was a huge fan. In the event you are too young to be familiar with Rik Mayall, or if you are not a fan of British comedy, he was the creator of “The Young Ones.” He played Lord Flashheart in “Black Adder.” He was Drop Dead Fred in the movie of the same name. He was great, a very well respected comedian in the U.K.

Rik Mayall died after a seizure. He became a seizure patient after an accident in 1998 left him in a coma for several days. “Sudden Unexpected Death From Epilepsy” took a comic genius.

(Edit: I originally posted this after Mr. Mayall’s death. Peter Richardson, a friend of his whose son was one of the last people to see him alive said that “it was a seizure of some sort.” Mr. Mayall’s wife now says that it was a heart attack...

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Category: Uncategorized Comments: One comment

To get social security (government assistance) as a seizure patient you must meet four requirements (1). For the purposes of this discussion, you only really need to be aware of two of them.

One: “We (the government) decide that you cannot adjust to other work because of your medical condition(s).” Also, in the case of grand mal seizures, you have to have more than one seizure a month (2) and/or petite mals must occur more than once a day (ibid).

A seizure patient will lose his or her right to drive after each and every seizure for six months to two years, depending on which state he or she lives in...

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Category: Falling Down Funny BookMark HawkinsSeizures Comments: 8 comments

Let me start by saying that breast cancer is a horrible disease and I feel badly for anyone who has it or gets it. I wrote that headline to get your attention. But I do have a reason for starting to turn on “Breast Cancer Awareness Month” and I know I am not alone.

I have epilepsy. I have been trying to promote epilepsy awareness for some time and it often feels like an uphill battle. Not only do people not really seem to care about epilepsy, but quite the opposite: many seem to have something against it.

I am not going to go into the recent story of Coach Jerry Kill, the University of Minnesota football coach who had a seizure during a game and was rewarded with calls for his removal...

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