Touch your neck, right above your collar-bone, and you'll find a little gland called your thyroid. It only weighs an ounce, yet this thyroid's hormones control your metabolism.
When those hormones are balanced, everything is fine. But if your thyroid makes just a little less or more than you need…it could cause havoc, both with how you function and the effectiveness of your AEDs.
Hypothyroidism — or an underactive thyroid — is the real baddy. It can result in fatigue, weight gain, constipation, fuzzy thinking, low blood pressure, fluid retention, depression, body pain, slow reflexes, and much more.
On the other hand, hyperthyroidism — an overactive thyroid — can result in a rapid metabolism and symptoms like: anxiety, insomnia, rapid weight loss, diarrhea, high heart rate, high blood pressure, eye sensitivity/bulging eyes, vision disturbances, and many other concerns.
Although any kind of hormone irregularity is cause for concern, endocrinologists, generally consider hypothyroidism the worse of the two.
Which leads us to the bad news…
In a new study, when researchers at the American Academy of Neurology called for hormone testing…
The team found that about 32% of epilepsy patients who were taking anti-epileptic drugs (both in mono or polytherapy) had thyroid hormone abnormalities.
The most relevant finding was in patients who were taking Depakote (Valproate) as a monotherapy.
Previous studied had shown that Depakote increased the levels of thyroid-stimulating hormones which, in turn, can lead to hyperthyroidism.
However, when recent research compared anti-epileptic drugs, they found that the following drugs actually encouraged hypothyroidism. (The no-no.)These drugs were:
40 Republican extremists in the Senate voted to end Medicare as we know it.
In doing so, they once again showed a willingness to callously rip apart the social safety net and throw seniors under the bus rather than ask corporations or the ultra rich to pay their fair share.
It's appalling. And it's also incredibly unpopular.
After House Republicans voted to end Medicare, there was a tremendous uproar from their constituents. And the ensuing firestorm of criticism helped push the Republicans back on their heels and put them on the defensive.
If we can do this again, we can help take Medicare off the table as a bargaining chip in the debt ceiling and 2012 budget fights.
You mind find my answer trite: But I HATE falling down and walking into glass doors, walls, anything you can think of. And my special talent is falling UP stairs. My legs are a mess, I'm limping along, but refuse to give up at least some part of my daily walk. (I just can't make it for 3 miles, at the moment. But some day...) Compared to others, I know I'm very lucky, but the concussions really stink. Phylis Feiner Johnson www.epilepsytalk.com View Thread
When you told a relative, friend or lover, that you had epilepsy, how did they react?
Were they curious, scared, nonplussed, accepting or in denial? Did they stick around or head for the hills? Did they ridicule you or want to know more? "How can I help you...what is it like...how does it feel?"
I can't say my early experiences were very positive. My parents were repelled and never said the "e" word. They treated me like a pariah and assured me that I would never amount to anything
These days, because of Federal budget cuts, virtually EVERY non-profit is desperately in need of funds.
I virtually get phone calls every day. The American Lung Association is calling me as I write this article. (I guess I'm on too many lists!)
But the real question you have to ask is: Not how much money you're giving, but WHERE it's actually going. How do you know how your charitable dollars are being spent?
(Fortunately The Epilepsy Foundation is a 3-star charity, according to the trusted Charity Navigator. It's also ranked as a top-rated charity by the Charity Watch Organization, part of the American Institute of Philanthropy.)
But the controversy over the best-selling Three Cups of Tea, written to raise money for the Central Asia Institute (CAI) is a real eye-opener. And they're in very hot water over the accountability of their financial practices.
Recently, CBS' 60 Minutes aired an expose about this charity and also questioned how they spent its funds. In fact it wasn't just building schools and hiring teachers in remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
The book was quoted as being as being "a beautiful story and it's a lie."
To read the controversy surrounding Three Cups of Tea — which is just one charity — go to:
When I went to the Philadelphia "Town Hall" meeting for the EEOC, it was very impressive.
The room was packed. There was a huge presentation board and someone speaking sign language for the non-hearing. There were people of all kinds of disabilities on the ADMINISTRATION BOARD — non-seeing, wheelchair bound and others.
In other words, the EEOC doesn't just walk the walk. They talk the talk!
Just to prove it, the EFA announced newly issued regulations from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for implementing Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA).
Title I protects people with disabilities, like epilepsy, from discrimination in the workplace.
"The Epilepsy Foundation is pleased that the EEOC has issued its final regulations to implement the new law, which became effective on January 1, 2009.
These regulations will ensure that the original purpose of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is finally implemented, which is why I worked for the passage of that law originally," said Tony Coelho, honorary lifetime board member of the Epilepsy Foundation and former U.S. congressman from California, who served as a primary author of the original ADA.
The new regulations have listed several conditions, including epilepsy, which should—almost without exception—be considered disabilities under the ADA.
The clarified law and regulations are designed to eliminate any question of whether a person with epilepsy should be protected from illegal discrimination under the law.
"These regulations are a result of a truly bipartisan effort," said Sandy Finucane, the Foundation's Executive Vice President. "The Foundation is very pleased with the clear approach to implementing the definition of disability that the EEOC has taken.
We want, as Congress wants, to get and keep people who have epilepsy in the workforce, and the ADA and these regulations will help us do that."
Entitlements And Financial Services — From NPR 4/8/2011 If you're concerned about what government services could affect you, here's a brief low-down…
Retirees would continue to receive their Social Security checks, because those are paid for out of separate trust funds.
Medicare should also remain funded during a short shutdown. New applications for cash benefits — along with disability coverage under Medicaid — would be delayed.
States are nervous that some federal programs they help administer — particularly welfare and food stamps — could run into trouble if a shutdown endured. Those programs rely on frequent transfers from the U.S. Treasury and could run out of money quickly if the financial tap is turned off.