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Bangalorean Represents India At Epilepsy Meet

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Times of India
19 November 2010
Bangalore, India

Laurels Down Under
Having successfully battled hot–water epilepsy and severe social stigma, K C Janardhan has come a long way in making a mark for himself. A well–known handwriting researcher, trainer, graphologist and calligrapher from Bangalore, Janardhan was chosen to represent India at the 8th Asian Oceanic Congress that was held in Melbourne, Australia, last month.

Janardhan was invited to speak on "Winning with Epilepsy and Calligraphy" in the Epilepsy and Society Programme, to motivate and inspire others to fight the illness and rid themselves of stigmas associated with it.

Janardhan’s presentation focused on the discovery of hot water epilepsy in the late 1960s and how doctors like K S Mani of Nimhans carried out the treatment, besides how epileptic patients are slowly being accepted by society.

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Matrimonial Camp For Epilepsy Patients

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Sakaal Times
18 November 2010
Pune, India

Sanvedana Foundation – a city–based Epilepsy Support Group has organised a matrimonial camp exclusively for epilepsy patients, on November 21. There will also be experts’ lectures for patients and their patients.

Addressing media, founder director of ‘Sanvedana’ Yashoda Vakankar said, "Providing a platform for the epilepsy patients to share their experiences, the group was started in 2004. By the time, we come across the difficulties faced by epilepsy youngsters, while looking for life partner, Sanvedana started vivah.aarogya.com. It’s special online matrimonial bureau for people suffering from Epilepsy, Cancer, HIV, Disability and other special needs."

Sanvedana conducted its first matrimonial camp in 2008, which was responded hugely from the members across the country. The second camp has been organised on November 21 at G L Apte Hall, Apte Road, Deccan Gymkhana from 9 am to 2 pm.

‘Epilepsy marriage bureau’ is the brainchild of Sanvedana member Mohan Phatak. Phatak said, "Particularly for the girls and their parents is it difficult to manage marriage. Sometimes, marriages occur by cheating and hiding the diseases. We at Sanvedana try to clear their doubts and prejudices."

During the last matrimonial camp, eight couples were married, one of those couples is going to share experiences at the upcoming camp. Neurologist Dr Rahul Kulkarni, marriage counsellor Vandana Kulkarni and activist–writer Dr Anil Awachat would guide at the camp.

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Fighting Stigma, He Wrote His Own Success

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The Hindu
17 November 2010
Bangalore, India

Mr. JanardhanMr. Janardhan
His story is an inspiration to those who suffer from epilepsy. A calligrapher of international repute, he was born with epilepsy and managed to battle all odds to live a full life.

Speaking to The Hindu, on the eve of National Epilepsy Day (November 17), K.C. Janardhan says that though born with the condition, he emerged a successful man. "Constant medication cured my condition. I want to tell my story to everyone who is affected with epilepsy. I want to tell them to not shy away but come out in the open and get themselves treated," says Mr. Janardhan, who is Executive Committee Member of the Indian Epilepsy Association, Bangalore Chapter. He implores people to fight the stigma that is often attached to this condition.

Mr. Janardhan, also a well known handwriting researcher, trainer, document examiner and graphologist, recently represented India at the eighth Asian Oceania Congress held recently in Melbourne. He spoke on ‘Winning with Epilepsy and Calligraphy' at the Epilepsy and Society Programme.

He was born with hot water epilepsy and was cured after he underwent medication for 20 long years. More than the condition, it was the social stigma he faced that made him a rebel and gave him the strength to fight prejudices.

"When I was diagnosed with it at the age of seven, I was asked to go to NIMHANS, which at that time was known as the Mental Hospital. I had to visit it every three months for regular checkups. My relatives termed me mad and shunned me." To cope, he channelised his pain to develop talents such as mimicry, sculpturing, storytelling, painting and public speaking. "This eventually drew their attention away from my condition."

Social stigma
"The strong social stigma associated with the condition prevents people even discussing it in public.
I'm trying to motivate people to get themselves treated and lead a normal life," Mr. Janardhan said.
"A good neurologist will help because 80 per cent of the time, the condition is curable."
He can be contacted on This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Disclaimer: The news story on this page is the copyright of the cited publication. This has been reproduced here for visitors to review, comment on and discuss. This is in keeping with the principle of ‘Fair dealing’ or ‘Fair use’. Visitors may click on the publication name, in the news story, to visit the original article as it appears on the publication’s website.

An Epileptic Too Can Work With Great Precision

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DNA India
17 November 2010
By Soumita Majumdar
Bangalore, India

A renowned handwriting researcher, trainer, graphologist, calligrapher of international repute and an epilepsy patient, KC Janardhan’s life is an inspiration for one and all. Struggling with the disease from the age of seven, Janardhan was recently selected by the Indian Epilepsy Association and the International Bureau of Epilepsy in Ireland to represent India at the 8th Asian Oceanian Congress.

In a tete–e–tete with DNA, this fighter reveals the struggle behind the man and what it takes to emerge as a winner.

How did you first discover your medical condition?
Since birth, I had hot water epilepsy, though it was detected only at the age of seven. The attacks were triggered by pouring hot water over the head. As I grew up, I threw tantrums while taking bath, as I would feel uncomfortable. I used to even avoid getting a haircut as it required a hair wash. Finally I was put on treatment at Nimhans during the 1970s and by the time I was 20, my disease was almost cured.

Was dealing with your medicalcondition a problem?
Since the duration of the attacks was brief and lasted between 30 seconds and a minute, it did not quite affect my daily life. But the social stigma affected me badly as I always had to maintain some distance from friends and relatives. Even today people cannot open up about epilepsy as it becomes a threat in getting a job or getting married.

What motivated you to choose handwriting and calligraphy as your career?
I did a self analysis and decided to follow my natural abilities. Calligraphy is a natural art form that was getting lost and I was interested in bringing out the beauty, clarity and precision of this art. Society has a preconceived notion about epilepsy patients as erratic, undependable and unorganised.

I have proved that these people can be extraordinary in their career, by receiving several accolades in my professional sphere. Presently, my 180 clients across the globe include Motorola, Star TV, The Oberoi, Volvo, Mercuri Goldman and Cathay Pacific.

What do you think is essential today, to tackle epilepsy?
If someone gets epilepsy, he should consult a neurologist immediately. Around 80 to 90% of epilepsy is curable either with medicine or surgery. However, one should remember that constant medication for three to five years is important and skipping even one dose may lead to a reversal.

Tell us a little about the problems that people with the condition have to face.
The main problem is lack of understanding and empathy from the society. One should understand that epilepsy is not considered synonymous to mental disease and insanity anymore, but is defined as a mental condition.

Disclaimer: The news story on this page is the copyright of the cited publication. This has been reproduced here for visitors to review, comment on and discuss. This is in keeping with the principle of ‘Fair dealing’ or ‘Fair use’. Visitors may click on the publication name, in the news story, to visit the original article as it appears on the publication’s website.

Who Says Epilepsy Can't Be Cured?

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Expressbuzz.com
17 November 2010
By Luna Dewan
Bangalore, India

General belief regarding epilepsy is that it is not curable but a Bangalorean stands as a testimony that it can indeed be cured by taking medication religiously.

"Continuously for 10 years, I was under medication. Then for surety purpose, I continued the medication for another 10 years. It has been 25 years now and I have not had any epileptic attack", says 48–yearold K C Janardhan.

He is a calligraphy expert and an Executive Committee Member of Indian Epilepsy Association.

He was suffering from hotwater epilepsy (wherein a hotwater bath triggers seizures) since birth. The condition was diagnosed when he was sevenyearold. He says it was in 196768 that he started taking treatment from NIMHANS.

"Now with the advancement of science, a lot of medications are available and about 80 per cent of epileptic cases can be treated", Janardhan says.

He adds a caution: "Epileptics should keep in mind that once they start taking medicine, they should not miss even one dose during the course of medication, else it will relapse and have to start all over it again."

He says epileptic patients should be made aware that the disease is curable. He adds that the knowledge will boost their morale and drive them to achieve greater heights.

Janardhan himself has written about 75,000 citations for countries such as Spain, Italy, France and has delivered lectures in several management colleges.

'Stigma hurts more than seizures'
Janardhan says when he, at the age of seven, started going to NIMHANS for treatment, children in his society started taunting him as mad. He adds that as he used to regularly go to a hospital for mental patients, other children never played with him.

"It is not be intensity of the disease [meaning seizures] but the stigma and myths attached with the disease, which have been lowering the selfesteem of epileptics," he avers.

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Cerebral Malaria Linked To Epilepsy, Behavior Disorders

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DNA India
17 November 2010
London, UK

Solidifying the link between malaria and neuropsychiatric disorders that affect hundreds of thousands of children, almost a third of cerebral malaria survivors developed epilepsy or other behavioral disorders in the most comprehensive study to date of the disease in African kids.

Gretchen Birbeck, an associate professor of neurology and ophthalmology in Michigan State University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine, led the research, which was conducted on African children.

Cerebral malaria is a severe form of malaria affecting the brain, occurring predominantly in children, with a mortality rate of 15-25% and it affects about one million children every year, primarily in sub-Saharan Africa.

"Our findings show that children with cerebral malaria are at risk of developing several adverse neurological outcomes including epilepsy, disruptive behavior disorders and disabilities characterised by motor, sensory or language deficits," said Birbeck.

"Specifically, the modifiable risk factors for these disorders in children with cerebral malaria are acute seizures and extreme fevers," she added.

Since most of the neurological effects did not present themselves immediately, they were not evident at the time of the child's discharge from the hospital after the initial malaria illness.

"But if the findings of our study are generalised, then about 135,000 African children younger than 5 years develop epilepsy due to cerebral malaria-induced brain injury each year, and cerebral malaria may be one of the more common causes of epilepsy in malaria-endemic regions," she explained.

The study looked at several hundred children during a nearly five-year period in Blantyre, Malawi and Birbeck noted that the impact of the findings on African society is immeasurable.

"The long-term loss of human potential from these disorders is mind-boggling. Yes, these children are surviving the malaria, but their quality of life and what they contribute to society is severely hampered. There is a huge burden of post-malaria neurological disorders," she said.

Disclaimer: The news story on this page is the copyright of the cited publication. This has been reproduced here for visitors to review, comment on and discuss. This is in keeping with the principle of ‘Fair dealing’ or ‘Fair use’. Visitors may click on the publication name, in the news story, to visit the original article as it appears on the publication’s website.

Support Group Works To Find The Perfect Match For Epileptics

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Indian Express
17 November 2010
By Samarpita Banerjee

Members of the Sanvedana epilepsy support groupMembers of the Sanvedana epilepsy support group
EPILEPSY patients often suffer not just from the condition but also the social stigma associated with it.

Among the problems faced by patients is a difficulty in finding a partner. A support group, Sanvedna, is working to help epilepsy patients find the perfect match.

"Till a few years back, I had a very low self confidence and was not sure if I would ever get married.

My association with Sanvedana changed everything. Today, I am happily married for almost a year," said 26–year–old Deepak Patil (name changed). He met his wife during a marriage meet organised by the group.

The support group was started by Yashoda Wakankar, an epileptic herself, and Radhika Deshpande and Mohan Phatak, who have epileptic children. The group will organise a second marriage meet on November 21.

"We laid the foundation of ourgroup in 2004. With our interactions with patients and their parents, we found that marriage was a major issue for many of them. It was then that we thought of starting a meet to help such people," said Wakankar.

The group started a marriage bureau in 2007 and organised its first marriage meet in 2008. As many as ten couples have found their match through the initiative. "There is a lot of stigma attached to the disorder. Through these meets, we want to create awareness among the youth and their parents that epileptic people can lead a normal life with medication and care," said Deshpande.

Patil, who completes a year of married life in December, said, "I found my match in Sanvedana’s marriage meet. My wife is a children’s counsellor and she is epileptic. We have had no problems and are leading perfectly normal lives."

Already 140 have registered for this year’s meet. Well–known neurologist Dr Rahul Kulkarni will attend the meet and talk on marriage and epilepsy. "There has been an increase in awareness. But still marriage with an epileptic person is considered taboo and it is this mindset that we need to change. It is a great initiative that Sanvedana has taken up," said Kulkarni.

Marriage counsellor Dr Vandana Kulkarni and Dr Anil Awachat will also be present.

"People from places like Thane, Mumbai, Nagpur and Chennai have also registered. We are hoping that each one of them attend the meet so that we are able make a difference," added Wakankar.

For details contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

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Doctors Will Visit School To Spread Epilepsy Awareness

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Times of India
29 October 2010
Mumbai, India

Catch them young and instil them with awareness.
This is the motto adopted by doctors working in the field of epilepsy–a neurological disorder characterized by loss of consciousness and convulsions–who have decided to reach out to the youth and spread awareness in a bid to do away with the stigma attached to the condition.

On October 30, the Indian Epilepsy Association will begin its an awareness programme for schools and schoolchildren as part of the National Epilepsy Day, which will be observed on November 17. “There is a lot of stigma and myths attached to epilepsy.

Very few still realize that the disorder can, in most cases, be completely kept under control with medication,’’ said Dr Pravina Shah, who heads the E–cell or the Indian Epilepsy Association’s Mumbai unit. Tagged the ESTAR (Students & Teachers Awareness Rollout) programme, the association will hold discussions with students and will also screen a 12–minute film, spreading the message about the disorder.

Read more...

Your Age On Your Page The Latest Research

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Indian Express
16 October 2010

Your Age On Your Page The Latest Research
below zero Infertility more common in women with epilepsy WOMEN with epilepsy may have a higherthan–average risk of fertility problems, particularly those on multiple anti–seizure drugs. Researchers found that among 375 women with epilepsy trying to become pregnant, 62 per cent suc cessfully conceived, usually within two years. The rest, 38 per cent, remained infertile for an average of three years.

Of women on one medication, 32 per cent failed to conceive during the study period. That figure was 41 per cent among women on two epilepsy drugs, and 60 per cent among those on three or more drugs. Only 7 per cent of those not taking any anti–seizure medication failed to conceive, the researchers from Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute in Trivandrum, reported in Neurology.

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