My name is Chase and I’ve had epilepsy since I was 17. I don’t remember how it started as I’ve lost a lot of memory, but the story I’ve heard was that I started having some weird experiences where I had trouble speaking. We thought maybe it was related to something like the oil paint solvents I was using in art class but then I had a full on grand mal seizure one day and got rushed to the hospital. It was happening for a couple of weeks but all I remember is waking up scared one morning and my parents telling me what was going on.
I started taking medicine right away and then started driving again just a couple months afterwards, but the meds I was taking was messing me up. In the end I wasn’t able to drive anymore as I was taken off my medications due to side-effects.
I was having several seizures a week, not grand mals, but constantly having these moments where I couldn’t communicate with or understand others for stretches of time.
Luckily I was able to go back on a medication that wasn’t tearing me apart like the first one was, but it also wasn’t fully treating me either. Most of the seizures I was having weren’t super intense, but they happened often enough and took my attention away from the world where I couldn’t function well, couldn’t drive, and had difficulty working.
After some time I was sent for tests to see if I was a surgical candidate but after a WADA test for my memory, they recommended the RNS System as a better option.
It’s been 12 years now since I’ve had epilepsy and now I’m starting a new chapter in my life with the RNS System — which has been activated for about 3 months now.
I have hopes to drive again and be able to work — earn an honest living without being stopped all the time in the middle of my work day. I just finished my Bachelor’s degree, so I’m optimistic.
Now with the implant, all my friends joke that I’m a robot or a cyborg or something — it’s just fun and cool for them.
Published on: November 9, 2014
This represents the experience of individual(s) who have used the RNS System. Individual results will vary.