COVID-19 and Epilepsy: Ask the Experts Live Stream

Wednesday, March 18, 2020
11:30 am CDT

During this live stream, pediatric epileptologist Dr. Douglas Nordli from UChicago Medicine, neurologist Dr. Jeffrey Loeb, and neuroimmunologist Dr. Michael Carrithers from the University of Illinois at Chicago fielded audience questions on COVID-19 and epilepsy.

Questions Addressed:

Are individuals with epilepsy more susceptible to COVID-19? (1:41) 

Does a person’s seizure type impact their susceptibility? (4:00) 

Does COVID-19 lower seizure threshold? If so, should anti-seizure medications be increased? (6:00) 

Could COVID-19 trigger a seizure in people who have been seizure free for over a year? (7:50) 

Is there a higher risk of SUDEP associated with COVID-19? (9:19) 

How can patients be proactive, particularly those with a pre-existing respiratory condition, asthma, etc.? (11:35) 

Are any anti-seizure medications known to cause suppression of the immune system? (13:00) 

Can you address concerns about how ibuprofen may interact with COVID-19? Do other medications have the same impacts? (16:50)  

Is a person more likely to contract COVID-19 if their epilepsy was initially triggered by a viral infection? (18:14) 

What should people whose immune systems are suppressed do? (18:45) 

What over the counter medications can patients on anti-seizure medications take to mitigate flu-like symptoms? Are there any drug interactions of note? (19:29) 

How is medication availability being affected? (21:30) 

Do you foresee a shortage of drugs being manufactured in China? (22:30) 

Can I give my child Tylenol or Motrin? (23:22) 

Are seizures in children a sign of COVID-19? (24:50) 

How active should children with epilepsy be? Are outdoor activities safe? (26:00) 

Are patients with epilepsy more likely to have severe cases of COVID-19? (27:19) 

Are patients who have recently had brain surgery at higher risk? (29:02) 

Are there any risks in having caregivers come into the home, given social isolation guidelines? (30:05) 

Why does the CDC list epilepsy as a high risk category for COVID-19? (31:45) 

The information contained herein is provided for general information only and does not offer medical advice or recommendations. Individuals should not rely on this information as a substitute for consultations with qualified health care professionals who are familiar with individual medical conditions and needs. CURE strongly recommends that care and treatment decisions related to epilepsy and any other medical condition be made in consultation with a patient’s physician or other qualified health care professionals who are familiar with the individual’s specific health situation.


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