Recent research - Neuroscience

Title: Impact of lifestyle management on the control of seizures and HRQoL including subjective wellbeing and resilience.

Research team: A/Prof Karen-leigh Edward and Prof Mark Cook.


Good lifestyle management has been shown to improve seizure control significantly in up to almost 43 % of patients, a figure comparable to a new medication.

Careful assessment of these triggers, with appropriate advice on how to best manage them, offers significant potential advantages to all patients with epilepsy.

Other workers have shown the majority of patients can identify factors that trigger their seizures, and that some of these patients engage in attempts to reduce their seizure frequency by avoiding these factors and by controlling the onset of their seizures.

Despite this, patients rarely receive specific advice around appropriate management of sleep, stress, and exercise, and are not encouraged to identify specific triggers that may precipitate seizures, or alternatively to employ non-pharmacological strategies to improve control. Appropriate counselling around these issues leads to better seizure control, improved quality of life, and a personal sense of control.

When individuals believe that life events and outcomes are manageable, learned helplessness is avoided and active attempts are made by the individual to overcome aversive situations opening the possibility of moving forward and achieve resilience.

Aim of the study:

The aim of this pre-test-post-test study is to evaluate the impact of counselling regarding lifestyle management on the control of seizures and HRQoL, satisfaction with life and resilience.


The objectives of this study are to (1) inform clinical care practice, and (2) provide pilot information of patients related to seizure frequency and health related quality of life related to lifestyle management. This will be achieved by comparing the average change over time post procedure controlling for variations in demographic and health variables.

Commencement Date: 2013

Sponsored by: SVPM

For more information on St Vincent's Neuroscience services and additional resources visit our dedicated Neuroscience site here.