First I want to preface this post by telling you I am not a medical professional. The information in this post was found researching The Epilepsy Foundation’s website. They are keeping a page devoted to Epilepsy and COVID-19 that is updated regularly. Please keep an eye on their page for up to date information.
Are Epileptics At A Higher Risk for Developing COVID-19?
The answer to this depends from person to person. If your epilepsy is easily controlled with medication or you only have occasional seizures with no other health conditions then you are not more likely than average Joe to develop COVID-19 or severe complications because of COVID-19.
However, if you are taking medications that compromise your immune system or you have other neurological problems that affect your immune system then you could be at higher risk for COVID-19. If you have other underlying health conditions such as problems with aspiration, heart or lung problems than you could also be at higher risk for COVID-19.
Can COVID-19 Increase Seizures?
Preliminary information from other countries seems to tell us that most people with epilepsy are at low risk for increased seizures with COVID-19.
However, as with an illness, in general, there is always some risk of increased seizures. If the illness causes fever than you could be at risk for increased seizures. Physical and emotional stress caused by an illness can also cause an increase in seizure activity. Other triggers may include: not being able to eat or drink regularly, not being able to take medication regularly, not sleeping regularly, and lastly worry and anxiety over COVID-19 and seizures may affect you as well.
What if I have COVID-19 and seizures increase?
Please call your epilepsy healthcare provider and your primary care provider. If possible please call them instead of going in as in many cases COVID-19 can be managed from home. Here is a video on how to manage COVID-19 at home from the CDC:
In most cases having epilepsy should not put in an increased risk for COVID-19 and most likely shouldn’t cause an increase in seizures. For more information please visit:
Also please continue to take precautions against COVID-19 and practice social distancing until the authorities say it is safe to do otherwise. If you have any concerns about this COVID-19 and your epilepsy please visit the CDC website, The Epilepsy Foundation website with the links above, or call your healthcare provider.