Twitter Study Reveals Lack of Understanding Toward Epilepsy

According to information from a recent Canadian study, members of the popular social media website Twitter are lacking understanding and compassion toward epileptics. This study has been published in the journal Epilepsy & Behavior.

For the study, Kate McNeil and her colleagues from Dalhousie University in Canada took a look at information they collected from Twitter that was designed to get a better understanding of how epilepsy is viewed throughout the social media website. The researchers looked at 10,662 tweets that were collected over a week-long period in April 2011. The researchers searched for tweets that included the keywords seizures and seizure. What they found was that 41 percent of those tweets were actually derogatory in nature.

One tweet that was positive, however, said, “Why do people joke about epilepsy and seizures? Do they joke about cancer? Attach your brain 2 a car battery & see how funny it is!”

This study has researchers believing that epilepsy should get a more positive voice in the online community so as to encourage people to better understand the condition and maybe even get rid of some of the stereotypes linked to the condition.

“While we are well aware of the stigma faced by people with epilepsy, we were shocked to see just how pervasive the problem is in social media. It certainly emphasizes a need for public campaigns to combat these negative attitudes,” said Dr. Paula Brna, a pediatric neurologist and corresponding author of the study.

Epilepsy is treated using various medications, including Topamax, which is also used to treat migraines. Studies have shown that Topamax taken during pregnancy can cause babies to be born with serious birth defects, including PPHN, cleft palate, neural tube defects and heart, lung and brain defects. If your baby was born with birth defects after being exposed to Topamax, contact Greg Jones today for a free consultation. I am experienced at fighting Topamax lawsuits and may be able to get you compensated for your baby’s injuries.

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