Thursday, May 25, 2006

A Very Long Day

Allie_1 Yesterday was probably the longest day of my life.  At 7:00 am my youngest daughter Allie came staggering into our room. Her hand was beating mechanically against her chest, her head was jerking uncontrollably, and she sounded as if she was hyperventilating. Sean tried to talk to her and get her to tell us what was happening, but she could not respond.  He grabbed her and held her and kept telling her to take deep breaths while I grabbed the phone to call 911.  We all stood in shock as we watched her come out of it. She was completely herself within a few minutes, and actually tried to convince us that she was fine. We weren’t sure if she had a bad dream or was sleep walking, but I couldn’t get the hand and head movements out of my mind and was convinced that she had a seizure. So we rushed her to the ER where we sat from 7:30 am until 7:00pm.

Initially the doctors weren’t sure if she did have a seizure, because she was able to walk and could remember what was happening to her. They decided to do a portable EEG which showed abnormal activity in her right temporal lobe, consistent with some sort of seizure. Thankfully, her Cat Scan and MRI came back normal, so they were able to rule out the worse case scenario, which would have been some sort of lesion. Needless to say, the most tense part of the day was waiting for the test results. The current diagnosis is partial benign seizure due to sleep deprivation. Seems that although there is no familial history of seizures, adolescents can be prone to them when they are sleep deprived. Allie has been going to bed late, waking up late and experiencing lethargy and drowsiness during the day. Her seizure was local, not general, and she was able to remember what was happening…so it’s not exactly a textbook scenario. I'm also thinking that her severe allergies and sinusitis may have caused her to experience some breathing problems, which in turn may have precipitated this in some way.

Nevertheless, it all comes down to a process of elimination as to what the cause was.  They did not prescribe an medications yet because they want to investigate her sleep patterns first. She'll have to go in overnight for a sleep apnea test and to see a pulmonologist. We appreciate your collective prayers. Sean and I are doing fine, although I doubt I'll get any sleep tonight.