Official: Traffic accidents increasing epilepsy prevalence in Qatar
More people in Qatar suffer from epilepsy than in many other parts of the world, in part because of the high number of injuries from traffic accidents here, a seasoned neurologist has said.
Epilepsy, a neurological disorder that affects one percent of the world’s population, is most commonly characterized by recurrent seizures. It has many causes, including infection, age-onset dementia and head trauma.
Hamad Medical Corp. sees up to 2,000 patients with epilepsy a year, and that number is only going up, the hospital’s senior consultant neurologist told reporters during a recent symposium.
“For epilepsy, the prevalence might be higher in Qatar due to road accidents which may cause epilepsy and some infections,” Dr. Boulenouar Mesraoua said, as quoted by the Qatar Tribune. “This is not the case in Europe and America. It’s also different from India and Africa where it’s probably the highest.”
He added that more needs to be done to understand the disease, particularly in Qatar, where no comprehensive studies have been conducted.
Nearly 1.2 million traffic violations were issued last year, a 39 percent jump from the previous year, new Ministry of Interior figures show. Qatar also saw more accidents resulting in injuries last year, compared to 2011, and the number of severe injuries increased some 3.2 percent.
Credit: Image courtesy of Team Epilepsy on Facebook