Gaige’s Story

Stopping Gaige’s Seizures

If he stayed up late, Gaige had a seizure. When he got too excited about an upcoming family event, the arrival of Christmas or his birthday, he had a seizure. If he exerted himself while playing basketball, he had a seizure.

When the seizures started at 3 years old, Gaige had a couple per week. As he grew, they became more frequent and difficult to manage.

At one point, Gaige was having nine to 10 seizures a week, sometimes more than one in the same night.

“He kept the television on all night so that he could identify where he was once his seizure stopped,” says his grandmother, Stefanie. “The television, always tuned to the Disney station, helped him recognize that he was at home, safe.”

At age 11, Gaige was diagnosed with the congenital brain disorder cortical dysplasia and had a one-stage epilepsy brain surgery. During that surgery the abnormal-looking portion of his brain was removed.

The surgery stopped Gaige’s seizures for about nine months, but then they began again – more frequent than ever. His short term memory faltered. He had difficulty remembering what he was learning in school. He had to relearn the same material each day.

Because medication didn’t reduce the number of seizures, Gaige underwent a two-stage epilepsy brain surgery. Gaige, now 16 years old, has not had a seizure since. He pays attention in class, does lessons on his own and reads words that he has struggled with for years. In gym class, he participates in all the activities and no longer worries that if he feels his heart rate increase he will have a seizure.

“It’s like a whole new life for him,” said Gaige’s grandmother. “We’re so thankful.”

https://flutter.nationwidechildrens.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Gaige-Cropped-e1509991511352.jpg

Stopping Gaige’s Seizures

If he stayed up late, Gaige had a seizure. When he got too excited about an upcoming family event, the arrival of Christmas or his birthday, he had a seizure. If he exerted himself while playing basketball, he had a seizure.

When the seizures started at 3 years old, Gaige had a couple per week. As he grew, they became more frequent and difficult to manage.

At one point, Gaige was having nine to 10 seizures a week, sometimes more than one in the same night.

“He kept the television on all night so that he could identify where he was once his seizure stopped,” says his grandmother, Stefanie. “The television, always tuned to the Disney station, helped him recognize that he was at home, safe.”

At age 11, Gaige was diagnosed with the congenital brain disorder cortical dysplasia and had a one-stage epilepsy brain surgery. During that surgery the abnormal-looking portion of his brain was removed.

The surgery stopped Gaige’s seizures for about nine months, but then they began again – more frequent than ever. His short term memory faltered. He had difficulty remembering what he was learning in school. He had to relearn the same material each day.

Because medication didn’t reduce the number of seizures, Gaige underwent a two-stage epilepsy brain surgery. Gaige, now 16 years old, has not had a seizure since. He pays attention in class, does lessons on his own and reads words that he has struggled with for years. In gym class, he participates in all the activities and no longer worries that if he feels his heart rate increase he will have a seizure.

“It’s like a whole new life for him,” said Gaige’s grandmother. “We’re so thankful.”

Share Gaige's Story

Comments

More Stories

  • Charlotte L.

    Age: 11 Years | Broken Arm

  • Carson F.

    Age: 6 Years | Prematurity

  • Ivy M.

    Age: 14 Years | Acute Lymphoid Leukemia (ALL)

  • Joel B.

    Age: 13 Years | Cerebral Palsy

  • Michael G.

    Age: 20 Years | Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome

  • Evan K.

    Age: 11 Years | Cleft Lip and Palate Repair