New to this particular section. A few ?'s

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Brad69
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 5/20/2007 4:35 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello all. I used to frequent this site, but in the Migrain section. To make a long story short, I was treated for migrains for a while, and discovered that I had a benign brain tumor in August of last year.
3 surgery's later I am brain tumor free, but do have some difficulties. Just recently started taking Keppra, 2000 mg's a day. I have a new neurologist, who had a sleep deprived EEG done, and I'm going tomorrow and will get the results. I have a friend who works in this office, and told me that she did know that he seen some abnormal activity, but she didn't have any details. So, I am a little nervous. Just want to get my life back on track. Has anyon had allergic reactions to Keppra? I have devoloped a rash, but it seems to be helping with my pain. Hope I am posting in the right section.
 
Brad

Another Day
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Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 5/20/2007 9:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Brad,

Since I am the only one here right now, I can tell you that you are in the right place. I haven't been around too long. I was diagnosed with epilepsy last August, although I did have a few seizures as an adolescent. I am not seizure free yet. We have had a hard time finding the right medication for me. I am taking 2000 mg. of Keppra per day. It was just recently increased from 1500 mg. I have never had any problems with a rash, but everyone has different reactions. Have you looked it up? Did they start you out on 2000 mg. per day? Also, the first sleep deprived EEG I had that showed something abnormal scared me to death. I, of course, thought the worse. I then had to be admitted for the four-day EEG which showed I was having seizures. With everything you have been through, maybe there is some temporary seizure activity. I'm not a doctor or a medical professional, just taking a stab at it because I can imagine you are going to make yourself crazy until you get the results.

Please let us know what you find out.

Take care!

Carla

djdaz_1985
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Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2408
   Posted 5/21/2007 4:38 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi there and Welcome back!

Your certainly in the right place to discuss Keppra! I have had epilepsy for 8 years now but have never used Keppra. I take controlled release Carbamazipine (Tegretol). An allergic reaction certainly sounds likely. Have you started taking/eating/drinking anything new recently? If not, then its definately something you should discuss with your GP. On the subject of EEG's, I dont think iv'e ever had a normal one! If there is something going on then you want to know what it is; and the only way to find out is to get abnormal results. Congrats on the brain tumour btw! yeah If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

Darren


Everyone has a guardian angel. They help pick you up when you fall, comfort you through your times of need and help you appreciate the times when things are going well.
 
Moderator - Epilepsy Forum
 
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Brad69
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 5/21/2007 6:30 AM (GMT -7)   

Thanks for the replies. I'm going for my appointment in an hour or so, I will give an update when I'm back home.

 I'm soo tired of all this mess sad   This has been the hardest year of my life, so far.......... I'm just curious as to what my dr. is going to tell me?


Brad69
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 5/21/2007 5:31 PM (GMT -7)   

Well, I now take 2 more meds. I'm now on Keppra 2000mg's a day, now along with Provigil, and Lexapro. sad eyes sad   Will it ever end ??? sad

He also mentioned a word I never really wanted to hear.....Disability sad

 

It just seems like the truth of my situation is catching up with me. I guess I never really thought that I could get disability, nor did I want too. But my finances are non-existant now days. If anyone has any info on disability, my ears are open whether the news is good or bad.

 

BRAD sad


Another Day
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 5/21/2007 9:17 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Brad,
 
I have been going through the disability process myself since last August.  I am now 56 years old.  In 2002 I had the onset of severe asthma.  It came on with a vengeance.  I worked for four years by taking my nebulizer to work and doing breathing treatments during the day.  I did miss a lot of work and I wasn't treated well because of it.  I also worked in an "environmentally sick" building, which they will never admit.  I was diagnosed with asthma a year after I transferred to that building.  It was very stressful when I was at home sick and also worrying about being fired because I was at home not being able to breathe. It was so obvious that they wanted me to leave.  Last August I was diagnosed with epilepsy.  With everything I had going on and not being able to drive, I knew I had to get out of there.  I worked for a university in a secretarial/administrative position.  Since I was 55 at the time, I qualified to apply for, not necessarily get, disability retirement through the KY Educational Retirement System, which I thought would be much easier than Social Security.  I was denied and my attorney is appealing and I will hopefully hear something soon on this part of it. The university is covering my health insurance during this time.  I had taken a short term disability policy at work which took some time to get started, but did pay o.k. for 90 days.  Because my seizures are still not under control, that policy has rolled over to a long term disability policy which is subject to be terminated at any time or can continue until I am 65.  So, I need the disability retirement to be approved.  I can also apply for SS disability.
 
Now, let me ask you a couple of questions, if you don't mind.  What is your age?  Are you still employed?  If so, do you have health insurance coverage through your employer?  If you are still employed, do you possibly have a disability policy there that might cover you for 90 days?  If you are still working, I would advise you to not just quit before you ask all the right questions.  You need to meet with your HR person and make sure all your bases are covered because this is something that can effect the rest of your life.  It also may be something that you have no choice but to do.
 
If I can help you in any way, please let me know.  I wish you the best.
 
Carla 

Brad69
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 5/22/2007 3:06 AM (GMT -7)   

Carla, thanks for sharing. To answer a few of your ?'s, and I am 26 years old, and unemployed ! sad   I regretfully left my last job because I wasn't performing satisfactory. I did'nt realize it at the time though. I was talking all kinds of meds, B/P, etc. for migrains and was blaming that for my tiredness. I was just tired and frustrated about not being able to perform my job to make my employer happy. I just did'nt see the whole picture at the time. When I walked away, my wife IMMEDIATELY made me seek further medical treatment. I am so glad she did, because the brain tumor was found, and was the size of a tennis ball.

Well, it was immediately took out Sept. 8 2006, and then I was blessed with a blood clot the next day, so another surgery took place, and in Jan. My bone flap was replaced with a plate and scews. Ever since my surgery and before I have struggled TERRIBLY with fatigue, and tireness. I can't read very well or write fast and comprehention is nonexsistant. Everyday is a struggle, and depression is showing its ugly face. I want nothing more than to have a job I could do and get up everyday and go, but its just not possible right now. All my experience is in metal fabricating, and welding. Now I can't read a tape measure, or wear a welding helmet. Not to mention my vision is a mess, but I did get glasses to help some.

Other than that life is good, HEY, I am still alive yeah


Another Day
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 5/22/2007 8:21 PM (GMT -7)   
Brad, I am hoping you have health insurance through your wife's employer.  I am assuming you do live in the U.S.  We do have people on this forum from all over the world.  I am from KY.  It sounds like your physician is on target in suggesting that you apply for disability, at least for now and then hopefully there will be some rehabilitation process for you down the road.  You are so young, I know this has to be especially difficult for you.  From what you have told me, I would think that Social Security disability would be your option and the sooner you get  started on that process, the better. Don't get discouraged if you get turned down the first time.
 
I can relate to your situation of trying to please your employer when you were sick.  I've been there.  I can also relate to the part about you not seeing the whole picture until your wife made you go for more medical treatment after you quit for job.  Last summer when one of my daughters took me to the ER because she thought I was having a stroke at my desk and I told her it was just the side effects of the Prednisone I was taking for asthma, that I didn't need to go to the ER and then we get to the ER and they also thought I was having a stroke, but ruled that out.  Then they insisted that I follow up with a neurologist and gave me a card with a local doctor's name and number.  So, my other daughter is driving me home and she grabs the card out of my hand and when I ask her what she is doing, she tells me that she is making an appointment with the neurologist for me because she knows I probably won't follow through and do it.  She was right.  And thank goodness she did that.  Not long after that I ended up in Vanderbilt Hospital and was diagnosed with epilepsy.  I had actually been sitting at desk at work having seizures and just did not know it.  I knew there was something else going on besides the asthma.  I knew I couldn't focus or concentrate, but I was afraid that with my age that maybe it was dementia or something.  It was a helpless feeling.  I didn't know what was happening to me.
 
It sounds like you may be experiencing some of those helpless feelings also.  I think anyone who goes through what you have gone through would experience depression.  You know you aren't able to do the job you have been trained to do right now.  And it sounds like you probably would not be able to mentally handle trying to be trained for a new skill at this time.  I think that might send you over the edge.  It certainly would me at this point while I am still trying to get my epilepsy under control.  If I tried to go back to work right now, I would probably run out screaming and crying because I also have trouble concentrating.  I never expected to be filing for disability in my lifetime either.  Like you mentioned, you would love to feel like going to work every day and hopefully one day soon that will be possible.  For now, I think you need to start your disability paper work.  Please feel free to email me any time if you need anything at all.
 
Take care!
 
Carla

Another Day
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1055
   Posted 5/22/2007 10:08 PM (GMT -7)   
Brad, another thing, I know you mentioned that you are taking 2000 mg. of Keppra per day which is what I am up to now.  I also take some Topamax  for my seizures.  I had to gradually work up to the 2000 mg. of Keppra.  This last time after I had several clusters of seizures, my neurologist increased me from 1500 mg. of Keppra to the 2000 mg dosage.  I always have a hard time adjusting to the increase in dosage of Keppra.  I get extremely tired, just real lethargic, not able to do much of anything but hang out on the couch for a couple of weeks.  I just wanted to point that out to you just in case you are experiencing some of that right now on top of everything else you are going through.  The people on here can tell you I was there just recently, but I am on the other side of it now, once more.
 
I wish I could do something to make it better for you.
 
Take care!
 
Carla

djdaz_1985
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2408
   Posted 5/23/2007 5:46 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Brad,
 
Im sorry to hear that you didnt get the news you were wanted. Disability is an aweful thing to have to cope with at a young age. I can't imagine what it must be like. I am 22 and I think I would be devastated. As if you don't have enough on your plate already, depression is a possibility. I would think it is fairly normal for you to suffer depression at least short-term while you get things sorted out. Perhaps a councillor would be a good idea. I dont know much about the Social Security and Health Insurance side of things as I am from the UK. Carla seems to be the guiding light there! You do need to keep your head up though, my grandma always used to say "Whatever doesnt kill you, makes you stronger" and its so true. Use these experiences as a learning curve so that you can come back stronger and better than before.
 
Let me know if there is anything I can do for you in the mean time.
 
Best Wishes
 
Darren
Everyone has a guardian angel. They help pick you up when you fall, comfort you through your times of need and help you appreciate the times when things are going well.
 
Moderator - Epilepsy Forum
 
Help support the forums so we can support you:  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 

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