According to the Los Angeles Coroner’s Office, epilepsy caused the “sudden unexpected death” of Disney star Cameron Boyce.
In early July, Boyce was found unresponsive at his home in California. His family had told news outlets he had succumbed to a seizure. He was 20 years old.
Dayton Center for Neurological Disorders epileptologist, Dr. Rajinder Singh said death by epilepsy is extremely rare.
“It’s called sudden unexpected death in an epilepsy patient (SUDEP). The chances of that happening is less than half a percent,” said Dr. Singh.
He said there are some risk factors including:
- Uncontrolled seizures
- Nocturnal seizures
- Generalized tonic clonic seizures
- Being male
- Intellectual disability
The cause of death is uncertain in patients with SUDEP. According to the Epilepsy Foundation, some researchers think the patient gets an irregular heartbeat during a seizure while others think it has something to do with breathing issues after a seizure.
Dr. Singh says the biggest thing someone can do to prevent SUDEP is to control your seizures.
“There are many options out there to control seizures including medication, therapies, knowing your triggers and avoiding them, and surgery.”
Dr. Singh believes it’s important to see an epilepsy specialist who can help you manage your care.
Dayton Center for Neurological Disorders also has a Seizure Monitoring Center where patients who are unsure if they are having seizures can be tested in a relaxing environment.
To learn more, visit: https://www.dcndinc.com/seizure-monitoring-unit/