My son, Kieran had his first seizure when he was 4, it was an absence seizure, and another about 6 weeks later. As he had experienced 2 seizures the battery of testing began to see what was happening. EEG, MRI and blood tests (including tests for genetic causes) were done over the following months. The conclusion was that he had epilepsy but without any known cause which is the case in about half of people diagnosed with epilepsy. As Kieran had been seizure free during this time and he wasn’t given any medication at the time.

photo of Kieran Dunn

Kieran wired up for an EEG

Things changed 6 months later when he started experiencing Complex Partial seizures during the night which increased from 1 the first night to 1 every 1 ½ hours at night while he slept during the space of a week. After that the seizures started to bleed over into his waking hours. His doctor placed him on to Carbamazepine which stopped the daytime seizures but had no effect on the nocturnal ones. Sodium valproate was tried next but sadly increased the seizures to up to 25 a day and the seizures into cluster seizures this is when you have one after another with a short gap of a few seconds in between.

At this point it was decided to do a video telemetry test. This is where you have an EEG for a longer period of time during which you are also recorded on video. Our doctor asked a colleague, who specialises in sleep disorders, to review the video footage and EEG results from the test. Luckily, she had seen another patient showing a similar pattern and type of seizures and queried if he had been tested for Ring20. Has he had and it had come back negative, our doctor requested if results could be rechecked. The test came back negative again but only 5 cells had been checked. So, after a further blood test, another test was done this time with a larger sample of 50 cells and the diagnosis for mosaic Ring Chromosome 20 was confirmed. Only 19 of the 50 cells were positive for Ring20 which is why it was missed in the original test.

If you show any of the signs detailed on this link it may be worth requesting an additional test with more cells. https://www.ring20researchsupport.co.uk/kno…

 

Return to Personal Stories…