This week on Seizing Life® Ara Carbonneau shares her difficult and remarkable decades-long journey to an epilepsy diagnosis. Years after recovering from meningitis as an infant, Ara began experiencing seizures as a teenager. Despite visiting numerous neurologists and trying various medications, Ara continued to experience seizures for decades. Yet, she continued to pursue her dreams, attending college and graduate school, earning her teaching certificate and masters degree, getting published and building a career.
At seven months old, Ara Carbonneau experienced febrile seizures as a result of meningitis. She eventually recovered from the meningitis, but began experiencing seizures as a high school student at the age of 15. Though she saw a number of doctors and specialists and was prescribed numerous epilepsy medications over the next two decades, she was not given a definitive epilepsy diagnosis until she was in her mid-30s, instead tagged with a diagnosis of “generalized seizure disorder.” It wasn’t until Ara became a patient of a Washington, DC doctor who specialized in post-pediatric meningitis epilepsy that she received an official diagnosis and began to connect the meningitis to the development of seizures. Ara’s unique and troubling epilepsy journey highlights the value of an accurate epilepsy diagnosis and emphasizes the importance of persistence in the pursuit of quality epilepsy care and treatment.
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