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Childhood-onset epilepsy has long-term effects on patients’ health and social status

Children and adolescents with epilepsy experience significant long-term socioeconomic consequences and higher personal health care costs. The findings come from a study that followed young epilepsy patients until 30 years of age.

The study – which included more than 11,000 Danish youths with epilepsy and more than 23,000 controls – found that people with epilepsy, even many years after diagnosis, are neither able to compensate nor catch up with their peers in relation to overall health, education, and social status.

“The findings indicate that greater efforts are needed to address the long-term needs of patients with epilepsy,” said Dr. Poul Jennum, lead author of the Epilepsia study.

Article: Long-term socioeconomic consequences and health care costs of childhood and adolescent-onset epilepsy, Poul Jennum, Jakob Christensen, Rikke Ibsen and Jakob Kjellberg, Epilepsia, doi: 10.1111/epi.13421, published online 20 June 2016.