Epilepsy: what type of therapeutic education? Volume 20, issue 2, avril-mai-juin 2008

Centre de Toul Ar C’hoat, 29150 Châteaulin

Various enquiries have shown that patients with epilepsy aknowledge a need for eductation on their condition. Evaluations have stressed inadequate performance on practical knowledge about emergency gestures, aspects of social adjustment and daily life, and the rights and duties of patients. Medical consultations are not sufficient for proper education on the disease and its treatment. Patient associations help spread information and teaching material has already been published. Other means have been developed, e. g. teaching seminars specially aimed at patients. Such « epilepsy schools » must also be organized in France. Evaluation of practices in this field is very recent. It has been shown that a better management of seizures after therapeutic education helps reduce anxiety and improve quality of life. Decreasing emergency hospitalizations and episodes of status is another goal that may lead to reduced costs. In France, the development of education nurses devoted to epilepsy will be a solution for the scarce medical availability and the increasing willingness of patients to become actors of their own management.