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"Epilepsy is an illness with its cause in the brain,” Alena Stuchlíková, the chairperson of Společnost “E” says . „The illness represents itself by repeated attacks of unconsciousness or altered consciousness, convulsions, or behaviour usually accompanying a change of brain’s electrical activity. Epilepsy has therefore nothing in common with mental illness, but yet the epilepsy sufferer cannot always do what he wants.”

Approximately 1% of the population of the Czech Republic suffers from epilepsy. The illness is treated by antiepileptics, in some cases, when the nidus of the illness can be precisely determined and the pharmacological treatment is not effective, the surgical treatment is available in the few specialized centers in the Czech Republic. Therapy is long term and needs to be strictly observed. Prognosis depends on the seriousness of the condition, probability of the recovery is 70 %, unfortunately one third of the patients are resistant to the treatment.

“Society Společnost „E“ has been helping the people with epilepsy and their families to improve the quality of their life since 1990. Society has currently 970 members,” Alena Stuchlíková says. „In comparison with the other European societies focused on the similar activity this is a high figure, because the people do not want to identify themselves with this disease and they keep is secret people around them. In the beginnings of its activity the society focused mainly on its informative, editing and educational activity. Currently we issue for our members and for the workers of other societies a monthly information magazine Aura, where we write about interesting data about the illness, its treatment and integration of the sufferers in healthy society.” The monthly is available to the medical practitioners of specialized and other surgeries.

“Aura offers contacts for advisory centers, news about the treatment of epilepsy, information about the activities of the society. We offer domestic and foreign family holidays and children’s’ summer camps with a doctor present. We organize swimming and physiotherapy with doctor’s assistance. There is also medical, psychological and legal consultancy. The people suffering with heavier form of epilepsy need an assistant for the escort to work or school. Every year we hence organize a retraining program for the carers of the people suffering from epilepsy, for which we received an accreditation of Ministry of Education of the Czech Republic and we issue certificates to its graduates. We process surveys and questionnaire research. In 2006 we processed a survey where we tried to find the current problems of people with epilepsy, the core of their problems and who is causing them. The subsequent activity will be focused on resolving these problems.“

If you are interested in more information about epilepsy, or the activity of Společnost "E", you can find them at www.epilepsie.ecn.cz and at the address Liškova 3, Praha 4, tel./fax 241722136, e-mail: cea@volny.cz.