I first started having petit mal seizures in 1970 when I had 3 major head injuries in a matter of 3 months. At first they were diagnosed as frontal lobe, but later as left temporal. I was on every medication and eventually I was seizure free.
From flying F-4 Jets to seizures
I graduated from military college as a 2nd Lt. and entered the Air Force. I flew F-4 fighter jets until I started having grand mal seizures. I was grounded and soon retired. Over the year, I had every test you could think of like EEG's, MRI's, spinal taps, pneumoencephalogram, to name a few. I was in a number of hospitals and saw a number of neurologists and neurosurgeons. Finally, in 1998 I found the head neurosurgeon. In 1999, he was going to do a trial surgery that would stop my seizures. The team found an arcanoid cyst that had to be removed from the right frontal lobe first because it was pressing on a major arterial artery. Two month later they performed a major operation on the left temporal lobe area.
My surgery's effects
I was seizure free for 3 months when I had a major grand mal seizure lasting more than 30 minutes. I was unconscious when they took the to the hospital and needed to be revived twice in the ambulance. Surgery was performed and I woke totally disabled, not recognizing the people I loved, unable to eat correctly, talk, get myself dressed, go to the bathroom, walk on my own, etc. It took me months in rehabilitation with intensive physical therapy, speech and occasional therapy to do some things. It took me 3 years to get back 95 percent to where I was before the surgery. I'm on a lot of medication, but seizure free!
Despite it all, you CAN do it!
At 71, I'm doing this to show others you can too. 2 1/2 years ago, I needed surgery again due to a bacterial infection of my skull. They also found part of my shunt damaged and fluid build up in my brain. All was repaired, but they had to remove part of my skull due to the infection, I was told a plastic implant could replace that. Unfortunately, I kept bleeding and surgery was performed 3 more times. My scalp was too thin, so I did not receive the implant. Now have a concave left side of my head, nevertheless, still I choose to be positive!
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