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Forum Name: Miscellaneous Cardiology Topics

Question: PFO & epilepsy?


 breet21 - Fri May 08, 2009 1:35 pm

I have patent foramen ovale and epilepsy. Is it possible for pfo to worsen epilepsy?
 John Kenyon, CNA - Sun May 10, 2009 9:20 pm

User avatar Hello --

While PFO doesn't worsen epilepsy, it is sometimes seen in conjunction with certain neurological problems, most often migraines, but sometimes neurocardiogenic syncope or seizures. So while it may be related (in a poorly understood way), it doesn't actually make it worse.

Hope this helps answer your question. Good luck to you.
 breet21 - Tue May 12, 2009 2:04 pm

Well my headaches and seizures have been becoming more frequent and severe. I've been feeling really out of breath and my chest hurts sometimes. So I have been worried that it is effecting it in some way. Your thoughts?
 John Kenyon, CNA - Sat May 16, 2009 9:42 am

User avatar Since the association between PFO and neurological problems is poorly understood, it would be difficult to know with any certainty whether the increase in symptoms in both areas is directly related or not. There is a certain logic in that notion however, assuming the statistical relationship is sound. If things are intensifying in both areas you probably need to be re-evaluated for the PFO and also to see a neurologist, since one is not generally treated by treating the other. The chest symptoms are a concern as are the neurological ones. If your PFO were to warrant surgical closure and this were to be followed by an improvement in seizures and headaches, this would not only be a great deal for you but would add to the meager evidence of a direct connection. If not, at least one part of the problem would be resolved.

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