How many people die from seizures?

More people die from epilepsy related causes each year than people who die from AIDS. The causes of dead include SUDEP (Sudden Unexplained Death in Epilepsy Patients), which is often listed as an official cause of death, accounts for 7-17% of deaths among the general population with epilepsy; Seizures which evolve into staus epilepticus, a continuous state of seizure that can be fatal; Seizures can induce a semi-conscious state, making a person vulnerable in daily routines such as taking baths or walking down stairs; Suicide: People with epilepsy who suffer from depression are five times more likely to commit suicide than the overall population. The seriousness of this disorder that affects 50 million people world wide is largely overlooked. Epilepsy is more common than multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy and Parkinson's disease combined. Funding falls far short of any funding dedicated to even one of these afflictions. Epilepsy is on the rise particularly among patients over 65 and because of an increase in head-injury survivors of wars in the Middle-East.

Teri K. Strong, Ph.D.