The success in controlling seizures by medication varies depending on the type of epilepsy. For example, if no underlying cause can be found for your seizures (idiopathic epilepsy), you have a very good chance that medication can fully control your seizures. Seizures caused by some underlying brain problems may be more difficult to control.

The overall outlook is better than many people realise. The following figures are based on studies of people with epilepsy, which looked back over a five-year period. These figures are based on grouping people with all types of epilepsy together which gives an overall picture:

  1. About 5 in 10 people with epilepsy will have no seizures at all over a five-year period. Many of these people will be taking medication to control seizures. Some will have stopped treatment having had two or more years without a seizure whilst taking medication.
  2. About 3 in 10 people with epilepsy will have some seizures in this five-year period, but far fewer than if they had not taken medication.
  3. So, in total, with medication about 8 in 10 people with epilepsy are well controlled with either no, or few, seizures.
  4. The remaining 2 in 10 people experience seizures, despite medication.

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