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Trip to Bureh Beach

Posted by on May 4, 2013 in News | 0 comments

The purpose of the trip was to debunk the myths of demons inhabiting the beach and prevent people with epilepsy from participating in social activities in the beach area. At the same time increasing recognition of epilepsy within the local communities as this will in turn increase access to clinical treatment as opposed to the harmful traditional practices. Fifty children (50) young people and beach community members took part in this year’s pleasurable trip to Bureh beach to celebrate World purple day on March 26th. However, a lot was achieved as children with epilepsy were bold to raise questions and discuss issues of epilepsy and were less stigmatized among the local community they met. The community members present promised to raise epilepsy issues within their membership having accepted persons with epilepsy as equals in the society. This interest demonstrated...

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Adverse Effects

Posted by on May 4, 2013 in Banner, Portfolio | 0 comments

People suffering from epilepsy in Sierra Leone face many challenging problems. The most tragic are burns often seen in women who usually cook in open fires and sustain severe burns if attacks occurs while cooking.  In our sensitization activities we emphasize the importance of women with epilepsy avoid cooking in open fire of even cooking at all but the realities are such that this cannot be avoided in most cases. We then encourage them to place the fire at a height so if they fall they would not fall in the fire.   Drowning accidents also occur as in many communities water is obtained from the river or stream and drowning even in shallow waters happen as the victim is denied help if in difficulties. We have also seen patients presenting with dislocated shoulder joints as a result of...

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Epilepsy Clinics

Posted by on May 4, 2013 in Banner | 0 comments

Even when people with epilepsy decide to seek medical treatment they face an uphill task.  Firstly there are insufficient clinics in the country to cater for their needs.  At the present time there are three clinics in the Western Area, one clinic each in Bo, Pujehun and Bonthe in the Southern Province, one in Kailahun in the Eastern Province and one in Makeni in the Northern Province. In addition there are more than a dozen outreach clinics in every district in the country. However these clinics are largely in the capital towns and cities. The outreach clinics are held monthly by a team of Community Health Officers from the Epilepsy Association of Sierra Leone that travels to the district clinics on a fixed date.  Medication is provided in these clinics at minimal cost with exceptions to under-five children and...

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Sensitization Activities

Posted by on Apr 21, 2013 in Banner, News | 0 comments

A lot of attention is placed on education in our quest to reduce the effects of epilepsy on the individual and community. Sensitization is therefore aimed at these two target groups. The community may either support or alienate people with epilepsy depending on their beliefs and attitudes with respect to the condition. There are many who believe that epilepsy is contagious and patients must not be touched even when having an attack. Over 50% of people also believe that epilepsy is due to demons or witchcraft that can only be addressed by traditional means. EASL therefore spend a lot of time and resource trying to dispel these beliefs. Posters, radio jingles, radio discussion programs, village community meetings and talks to schools, churches, mosques are regularly carried out. Every district has an Epilepsy Support Worker who is a social worker and...

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Causes of Epilepsy

Posted by on Apr 21, 2013 in Banner, Portfolio | 0 comments

In Sierra Leone, epilepsy starts at an early age with the mean age of onset being 12 years.  Many of the cases are due to birth injuries,  infections in childhood particularly cerebral malaria and meningitis, febrile convulsions and trauma.  As a result of the Civil war in Sierra Leone which ended in 1992, we see many cases of head injuries resulting from gun shots, shrapnel damage and machete assaults.  Road traffic accidents are also common, many associated with traumatic brain injuries. Middle aged and older patients presenting with epilepsy are relatively uncommon but strokes are perhaps the leading cause in this age group. With poor investigative facilities, the majority of patients seen cannot be adequately investigated hence the cause of their epilepsy remain undiagnosed. Stroke Neurofibromatosis Falling down...

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