Clinical Cases

ADHD with Epilepsy

Last modified on August 20th, 2018

Petr Zacharias
Written by Petr Zacharias

Homeopath Petr Zacharias presents a case of ADHD and Epilepsy in a girl of 5 who had 300 epileptic fits in one day. Her prognosis was better since her ailments started after vaccination.

Reprinted courtesy Petr Zacharias from : Case Quizzes And Clinical Hints For Devoted Students Of Classical Homeopathy by Petr Zacharias  © Petr Zacharias, 2017

A girl 5 years old was in very good health until she got a vaccination (Infanrix hexa). The same evening she developed high fever with generalized convulsions. It was diagnosed briefly as febrile convulsions but till morning conculsions repeated twice. The next day she developed convulsions with unconsciousness which happened twice during the day and then her state got worse rapidly. When she was hospitalized again, they measured 300 (three hundred) epileptic fits during 24 hours on video EEG. Three antiepileptic drugs were given together to stop the seizures. She was kept on drugs until today, having 2-3 seizures every day or every second day, always in a succession of 2 or 3 seizures. The  seizures were always during the night. She sweat a lot on her occiput during sleep.

Since 13 months of age she has not been developing mentally (in speaking) and physically (walking). She was not able to speak in sentences until today. She developed problems with concentration and was diagnosed with ADHD. She grinds her teeth during every seizure. She is very restless during consultation; she can´t sit in one place for a moment and she is very irritable and dissatisfied. She protrudes her tongue and bites it often. Her mother told me about her aggressiveness towards animals. She is also obsessed with what she wears and she refuses to go outside without nice clothes. She also has very strong sexuality.

Follow-up after one month

Since she took a remedy, she has had only two seizures during the last month and made a big improvement with speaking. Parents also said that she is a bit calmer.

Follow-up after two months

She had two very mild attacks of seizures only for a few seconds. Her walking and motor development improved to a significant degree and speaking is even better than at the last followup.

Follow-up after three months

She has had two epileptic fits since the last follow-up but this time a little bit worse than last month (still 90% better in comparison with original state). Her development is very good and teachers in kindergarten were impressed and asked parents what happened with her.

Follow-up after four months

There has not been any change since the last follow-up but EEG showed an amelioration and the neurologist said that if this amelioration persists, he will wean her from 50% of the antiepileptic medication.

Follow-up after six months

She still has 2 fits in a month, much are milder than before the treatment. Before the homeopathic treatment started she had had 2- 3 seizures every day or every second day together with problems with speaking and her walking was very awkward She was hyperactive with symptoms of ADHD. Now the seizures are much better regarding their frequency and its course. She is considered as being almost normal regarding her development; speaking is without mistakes and she is very calm, sits with the mother, seems very happy and laughs all the time. She is not aggressive, draws a picture for people and she can concentrate without much problem. This psychological change is so big that everybody who knows her told her parents about this change. Her walking is stable. Grinding teeth and night occurrence of the seizures is still there but in much milder form and only twice a month.

Follow-up after eleven months

Psychologically she is almost normal, no signs of ADHD and EEG is still better. Seizures twice a month without change. She is a very happy child, no restlessness, aggressivity of impulsive behavior patterns. Her sexuality is still very strong, still has a lot of perspiration on her occiput during her sleep. The epileptic fits are less freqluent. Her parents say that one of those fits always came when there is full moon.

Analysis

When the mother told me about the diagnosis and I found that in spite of the fact that the child is on heavy allopathic medication she has grand mal seizures almost every day, I was quite pessimistic about prognosis. On the other hand, what made the prognosis better was the fact that problems (epilepsy, arrested development and ADHD) developed after vaccination. When a pathology develops without provocation, it is in most cases a sign that such patient has a strong hereditary predispositions but for those who suffer from troubles after provocation, the prognosis is much better in most of cases (of course if the problems are functional and not structural ones). That was what gave me a little bit hope regarding her prognosis but the truth was, we faced a pathology affecting the most important physical part (central nervous system) and mental and emotional levels are affected strongly at the same time (arrested mental development + ADHD).

The next question having a relation to this case is the etiology (triggering cause) which is the vaccination. The main point in homeopathy is the proccess of an individualization. It is not wise to make a prescription upon the etiology alone. Why? Because an etiology does not tell us the whole story about an individual patient´s response to such a stimulus. Etiology alone does not individualize a case enough and we need other symptoms to understand a pattern. This is why I strongly warn you against routine prescriptions like Thuja or Silicea after or before the vaccination. This practice originates from misunderstanding of core and basic rules of classical homeopathy and they can eventually lead to severe damage of the patients. On the other hand, there are some rare cases where the etiology is the most important information creating a specific pattern together with one or two other symptoms while the rest of the symptoms do not fit. In such cases you have to ignore such other symptoms altogether.

So we have a child with very deep pathology to treat who is kept on heavy allopathic medication but there are symptoms despite that medication. For us this is a better situation than the one of paucity of symptoms that is often found  in patients who are kept on such a strong medication. Due to a very strong and complex symptomatology we have a chance to spot the remedy and it makes the prognosis better.

What I noticed first was a combination of the epilepsy and an arrested development. There are 3 main remedies having this combination as a keynote. These three remedies are: Bufo, Cicuta and Baryta muriatica. I noticed the girl was protruding her tongue quite often (keynote of Bufo), biting it, playing with it,  which is a very characteristic symptom (keynote) of Bufo. Another strong confirmation for Bufo was the occurence of seizures that have occured during the night only. Although there are many remedies having seizures during the night, other symptoms like protruding tongue and the combination of epilepsy with arrested development were crying for Bufo. I confirmed also a strong interest in sexual matters the child expressed every day by obscene talking.

Then the mother said: “My daughter never has a single epileptic fit, there is always two or three in rapid succession, one rapidly follows another.“ It is a very important symptom which is a keynote of Artemisia vulgaris but we have to mention that Cicuta has it as well.

Artemisia is also listed in the rubric related to grinding of teeth during convulsions, which is strong symptom in this case. In this rubric there is only one remedy in 3rd degree which is Hyoscyamus, one in 2nd which is Bufo and beside Tarentula and Sulphur which are in 1st degree, there is also Artemisia vulgaris. This made me quite insecure about Bufo as Bufo did not cover this rapid succession of seizures that is very characteristic here. I was stuck at that moment and studied Artemisia vulgaris in every reliable materia medica (Boericke, Hering´s guiding symptoms, Clarke, etc.) in order to find out if this remedy has any relation to sexuality, arrested development, protruding tongue or biting tongue (not biting tongue during seizures but in normal conversation) and I found out in Radar keynotes in Artemisia vulgaris in the mouth chapter: “Grinding teeth, bites tongue, speech unintelligible.“

I had a big problem as the biting of the tongue was the gesture that the girl repeated all the time. On the other hand I did not confirm this remedy in other aspects like arrested development, the emotional picture of anger, restlessness and repulsive behavior and the strong sexual element, all very strong symptoms of this girl. There was also strong perspiration on the occiput during sleep which is symptom that had existed since her very childhood. Therefore I consider it as one symptom belonging to the Calcarea carbonica layer and did not try to cover it by the uppermost remedy because it was obvious that since vaccination, the new layer of symptomatology has developed forming now the new pattern (uppermost symptomatology).

Because the Bufo covered not only epileptic fits (as Artemisia vulgaris also did) but also arrested development, protruding tongue (as well as Artemisia) and her emotional picture including her sexuality as well, I finally decided for Bufo so the first prescription was Bufo 200c in single split dose. After the first and second folow up I waited as there was steady improvement. After the third one I gave Bufo 1M as the state went a little bit down and some keynotes of Bufo were still present. After the fourth follow-up there had not been any changes since Bufo 1M was given so I came back to 200c and tried to be sure that Bufo in 200C potency had exhausted its effect.

After the fifth follow-up there had not been any change since the fourth follow-up (after Bufo 200C) and as no new symptoms were there, I decided to wait to see what the organism would do. The sixth follow-up revealed no change but occurence of seizures during full moon, which the parents registered last month together with strong perspiration of occiput during sleep which still persisted.That gave us the idea of Calcarea carbonica. This remedy is a great remedy for epilepsy if symptoms agree, especially when fits are triggered by videogames and full moon. So my last prescription was Calcarea carbonica

200C. Now I am waiting for the next follow up.

About the author

Petr Zacharias

Petr Zacharias

Petr Zacharias is the founder and main teacher at the Prague College of Classical Homeopathy. He studied with George Vithoulkas at the IACH and has conducted seminars with Dr. A. U. Ramakrishnan, Dr. S. K. Banerjea, Dr. Jorgos Kavouras and Erik van Woensel.

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