As an epilepsy advocate and a cancer survivor, Fall brings on simultaneous feelings of gratitude and frustration. Throughout Pinktober, I find myself a bit frustrated with the onslaught of info on breast cancer, knowing that epilepsy has very similar prevalence and and significantly worse mortality statistics.
Yet, I know that Breast Cancer awareness, and the advances in treatments and standards of care that I have directly benefited from, did not come without a fight. Were it not for Mary Lasker’s outrage and action, these changes may never have come to pass. If Mary Lasker is not a name you are familiar with, she turned the American Cancer Society from an organization with 1,000 members and a budget of $102,000 and developed it into one with $110 Million by 1961. She also lobbied congress to establish the National Cancer Institute and was responsible for running the first radio campaign at a time when no one would speak the word cancer.
I know that many who are living with an epilepsy diagnosis, as well as many other neurological diagnosis, still feel they need to hide it as people did of their cancer diagnosis in decades gone by. I know there is a lack of urgency to diagnose, treat and manage symptoms both on the part of patients and by many in the health industry, yet the mortality in epilepsy and other neurological conditions is extremely high.
By the Numbers
So lets take a look at the numbers.
Okay but cancer kills so it’s way more urgent right? But wait a minute let’s take a look at the mortality statistics.
All the Stats
And if you are a data nerd like me, I’ve put together a little data image for anyone who wants the picture of all the info together.
Maybe it’s time we start talking about epilepsy with the same urgency we talk about cancer.
Founder and CEO
Jessica brings a unique perspective to this leading epilepsy blog as she was diagnosed with epilepsy as a teen. She also brings 20+ years experience in marketing.