Health

Woman, 22, accused of being ‘drunk’ at work discovers she actually has EPILEPSY 

A 22-year-old NHS employee realized she had undiagnosed epilepsy when a colleague urged her to see a health care provider after performing ‘drunk’ at work. 

Annie Newcomen, from Liverpool, suffered from ‘episodes’ that might trigger sudden brain fog and reminiscence loss a number of occasions a day within the lead as much as her prognosis in March.

The speech therapist wrote off her signs for weeks however was taken to A&E by a coworker who thought she was ‘protecting up that she was drunk’.  

After initially diagnosing her with stress, medics finally found Ms Newcomen had been experiencing mini seizures and that she had epilepsy.

She is now taking treatment which has slashed the frequency of her suits from 3 times per day to only a few every week.

However, she can now not drive, take a shower or swim with out a lifeguard current and can’t return to work till her seizures are absolutely below management. 

Annie Newcomen, from Aigburth in Liverpool, was rushed to A&E after a colleague said was acting as though she was 'covering up' that she was drunk. The speech therapist had been 'feeling strange' and suffering from déjà vu and a foggy brain multiple times a day ¿ all tell-tale signs of the seizure-causing condition

Annie Newcomen, from Aigburth in Liverpool, was rushed to A&E after a colleague mentioned was performing as if she was ‘protecting up’ that she was drunk. The speech therapist had been ‘feeling unusual’ and affected by déjà vu and a foggy brain a number of occasions a day — all tell-tale indicators of the seizure-causing situation

Ms Newcomen informed the Liverpool ECHO: ‘In work I saved on feeling unusual, I had so much of déjà vu experiences. 

‘I might really feel as if I had forgotten all the things, I might be on the ward and go to the office – however neglect why I used to be there, or what I used to be doing.’

After weeks of affected by these signs, Ms Newcomen was then taken to the emergency division by a colleague.

‘I used to be taken to A&E that day as one of my colleagues knew one thing was up, they mentioned it appeared as if I used to be protecting up I used to be drunk, that is how I used to be presenting myself,’ she mentioned.

WHAT EPILEPSY? 

Epilepsy is a situation that impacts the brain and leaves sufferers at threat of seizures.

Around one in 100 individuals within the UK and one in 80 within the US have epilepsy. 

Anyone can have a seizure, which doesn’t robotically imply they’ve epilepsy.

Usually multiple episode is required earlier than a prognosis.

Seizures happen when there’s a sudden burst of electrical exercise within the brain, which causes a disruption to the way in which it really works.

Some seizures trigger individuals to stay alert and conscious of their environment, whereas others make individuals lose consciousness.

Some additionally make sufferers expertise uncommon sensations, emotions or motion, or go stiff and fall to the ground the place they jerk.

Epilepsy may be introduced on at any age by a stroke, brain an infection, head harm or issues at start that result in lack of oxygen.

But in additional than half of instances, a trigger is rarely discovered.

Anti-epileptic medication don’t treatment the situation however assist to cease or scale back seizures.

If these don’t work, brain surgical procedure may be efficient.

Source: Epilepsy Action  

Medics informed Ms Newcomen her signs have been stress-related however she knew they’d missed one thing. 

She mentioned: ‘I did not really feel harassed, I imply, the work I do can generally be demanding however I wasn’t harassed, everybody’s job is a bit demanding.’

Ms Newcomen contacted her GP the next day, who referred her to The Walton Centre, a neurology hospital in Fazakerley, Liverpool, to see a specialist at the tip of March.

While ready for her appointment, she underwent blood assessments and an electrocardiogram (ECG) — a check which checks the center’s rhythm and electrical exercise. 

Her outcomes have been regular however Ms Newcomen was nonetheless affected by on-and-off signs. ‘Some days I might be fully high quality, then others I would not,’ she mentioned.

On someday when she was ‘feeling actually unhealthy’ she known as the specialist hospital and had her appointment introduced ahead to the next day.

Ms Newcomen informed the neurologists that she was affected by ‘episodes’ the place ‘she could not communicate’ and would get a ‘foggy brain’.

‘He circled and mentioned to me that I’ve epilepsy,’ she mentioned.

Epilepsy is a situation that impacts the brain and leaves sufferers at threat of seizures. 

Seizures happen when there’s a sudden burst of electrical exercise within the brain, which causes a disruption to the way in which it really works. 

The physician additionally revealed Ms Newcomen was affected by focal seizures, also referred to as partial seizures, which may trigger a normal unusual feeling that is exhausting to explain, a sense that occasions have occurred earlier than and stiffness or twitching partially of the physique.

Some sufferers additionally expertise uncommon smells or tastes, tingling of their legs and arms and intense emotions of pleasure or worry. The seizures often cross inside seconds or minutes. 

Ms Newcomen’s are triggered by stress, tiredness and skipping meals.

She mentioned: ‘I used to be shocked, I believed epilepsy was one thing you may solely get while you have been a child and develop up with it, I did not suppose it may come on in grownup life. He informed me you will get it at any age.’

An epilepsy prognosis is especially based mostly on an individual’s signs and ECG and MRI brain scans could also be performed, however these usually fail to detect epilepsy. 

Around one in each 100 individuals endure from the situation, with principally older individuals affected. And 1,000 individuals within the UK die from causes associated to epilepsy each year.

The speech therapist continues to be ready on the outcomes from an ECG scan, which is due at the tip of this month, however has been informed that even when the check ‘comes again high quality’ she will nonetheless have epilepsy.  

She is now not allowed to drive, have a shower or swim with out a lifeguard.

She mentioned: ‘A lot of my independence has simply been stripped away from me. I used to be having about two or three seizures a day then, for about three weeks.’

After medics initially dismissed her symptoms as stress-related, Ms Newcomen was diagnosed with epilepsy, with her symptoms actually being signs of focal seizures. Ms Newcomen is now taking medication which has slashed her seizures from two or three times per day to just a few per week

After medics initially dismissed her signs as stress-related, Ms Newcomen was identified with epilepsy, along with her signs actually being indicators of focal seizures. Ms Newcomen is now taking treatment which has slashed her seizures from two or 3 times per day to only a few per week

Ms Newcomen is taking treatment and mentioned the frequency of her seizures have dropped from as much as 3 times a day to 3 occasions every week. 

During the seizures, Ms Newcomen mentioned: ‘My physique twitches, it isn’t a fall to the ground sort of seizure. My eyes flicker, I fully zone out – it’s as if I go away the room – I’m nonetheless aware, however my thoughts will not be there.’

She mentioned it takes six or seven minutes earlier than she can communicate. 

Ms Newcomen mentioned: ‘I’m a speech therapist, the final 5 years of my life have been focusing on speech and communication, after which for me not to have the ability to talk, It is how I knew one thing was positively not proper,’ she mentioned. 

‘It has been an enormous life change for me. I’ve needed to come to phrases with the truth that that is taking place to me, moderately than me treating sufferers – like I deal with sufferers who’ve had operations for epilepsy – and now I’m the affected person.

‘In phrases of my job, I would like to attend for the time being till my seizures are below management, however work are being so supportive of me and actually understanding about what’s going on.’

She added: ‘My complete outlook on life has fully modified. I do know it’s cliché however life is just too quick, I used to be petrified at first pondering that it may have been a brain tumour or something, bizarre as it’s to say, I’m fortunate it is just epilepsy, if that is sensible.

‘I look at it now like, you may’t take something without any consideration and it’s important to get pleasure from all the things that you’ve got in life. When they’re taken away from you, issues like going to work or driving a automotive, that is while you realise how fortunate you actually have been.’ 

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