Total Immersion Forums  

Go Back   Total Immersion Forums > Swim Your Way to Health
FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 04-11-2010
gogglesnoseplugs gogglesnoseplugs is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 63
gogglesnoseplugs
Default Swimming and epilepsy

Does anyone have any insight or understanding if swimming can help reduce the chances for having a seizure if someone is rather controlled on meds? I have a feeling my swimming has come to a halt due to some epileptic activity associated with my CP for safety reasons; I am not stupid and putting myself at risk of drowning because of a seizure. I am curious as to if down the road swimming might be helpful in staying healthy in this regard once my meds are in order.

P.S. - I suppose my progress with swimming better will always be a challenge; so I probably should not aim for perfection as much as I want it.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 04-11-2010
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
Coach
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,453
CoachSuzanne
Default

I am both a swim coach and a physician, and I would venture to say that this is an unanswerable question.

State DMVs and neurologists use certain guidelines to reinstate driving priveledges. but if you shouldn't be driving, you shouldn't be swimming and vice versa.

The main difference would be that with swimming you own self is the only life at risk (as opposed to driving).

The only scientific paper I could find was relating to a study of acute swim stress in mice who were then administered a convulsant medication. Acute swim stress (10 minutes in cold water) raised seizure threshold, whereas repeated swim stress did not affect it.

here is one discussion of that study, and there are several similar studies.
http://www.epires-journal.com/articl...194-7/abstract

The other common comment about seizures in water is that they can result in rapid submersion of air is expelled from the lungs.

Here is a position statement from a reliable medical publication (Clinics in Sports medicine) about seizures and sports, with a specific section on swimming.
http://imars.usf.edu/~cmoses/PDF_Lib...May%202003.pdf

I wish you the best of health, but I believe that anyone who speculates to answer this question is just making uneducated guesses.
__________________
Suzanne Atkinson, MD
Coach of 4 time USA Triathlon Triathlete of the Year, Kirsten Sass
Steel City Endurance, LTD
Fresh Freestyle

Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 04-11-2010
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Rio, Wisconsin
Posts: 564
westyswoods
Default

I would like to address your issue from an emergency medical response point of view. Coach Suzanne makes very valid points in referencing the correlation between swimming and driving restrictions. Anyone who has witnessed or lived with epilepsy understands how scary seizures are to those not familiar, even though for the most they part non life threatening. The question which needs to be asked is, are the life guards at the pool able to deal with such an event when in the water? If and when you should continue to swim it would prudent to speak with the pool director and guards about your issues. I am sure you are not the only one with epilepsy who is swimming, I applaud you for taking others and your safety into consideration.

I wish you well and have admired your courage and fortitude through following your post.

All my best in your journey forward.

Westy
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 04-11-2010
KatieK KatieK is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Scottsdale, AZ, USA
Posts: 295
KatieK
Default Service dog

I know a woman at the pool who has a service dog that can predict seizures. He sits at the end of her lane and watches her swim. I am not sure if he can sense them early enough to warn her or if he's mainly there to warn the lifeguard.

Good luck--I really hope you can find a solution that lets you get back in the water.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 04-12-2010
gogglesnoseplugs gogglesnoseplugs is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 63
gogglesnoseplugs
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CoachSuzanne View Post
I am both a swim coach and a physician, and I would venture to say that this is an unanswerable question.

State DMVs and neurologists use certain guidelines to reinstate driving priveledges. but if you shouldn't be driving, you shouldn't be swimming and vice versa.

The main difference would be that with swimming you own self is the only life at risk (as opposed to driving).

The only scientific paper I could find was relating to a study of acute swim stress in mice who were then administered a convulsant medication. Acute swim stress (10 minutes in cold water) raised seizure threshold, whereas repeated swim stress did not affect it.

here is one discussion of that study, and there are several similar studies.
http://www.epires-journal.com/articl...194-7/abstract

The other common comment about seizures in water is that they can result in rapid submersion of air is expelled from the lungs.

Here is a position statement from a reliable medical publication (Clinics in Sports medicine) about seizures and sports, with a specific section on swimming.
http://imars.usf.edu/~cmoses/PDF_Lib...May%202003.pdf

I wish you the best of health, but I believe that anyone who speculates to answer this question is just making uneducated guesses.
Quote:
Originally Posted by westyswoods View Post
I would like to address your issue from an emergency medical response point of view. Coach Suzanne makes very valid points in referencing the correlation between swimming and driving restrictions. Anyone who has witnessed or lived with epilepsy understands how scary seizures are to those not familiar, even though for the most they part non life threatening. The question which needs to be asked is, are the life guards at the pool able to deal with such an event when in the water? If and when you should continue to swim it would prudent to speak with the pool director and guards about your issues. I am sure you are not the only one with epilepsy who is swimming, I applaud you for taking others and your safety into consideration.

I wish you well and have admired your courage and fortitude through following your post.

All my best in your journey forward.

Westy
Quote:
Originally Posted by KatieK View Post
I know a woman at the pool who has a service dog that can predict seizures. He sits at the end of her lane and watches her swim. I am not sure if he can sense them early enough to warn her or if he's mainly there to warn the lifeguard.

Good luck--I really hope you can find a solution that lets you get back in the water.
I want to "clarify" a couple things since my last post. My seizure activity is not necessarily of convulsive nature, but rather a spell of absence. That does not mean convulsive seizures are not possible. I have had epilepsy for a long time and been on meds for 20 years to have well-controlled seizure activity. I never have swam without proper lifeguard supervision; after all, I am smart enough to know how to keep safety in mind. That being stated, my recent activity has been determined as "breakthrough" and the doctor's plan is to have my seizure activity under control as soon as possible. Driving is temporarily suspended regardless the type of seizure. After some extensive conversation about what I can do from a physical standpoint at a follow-up visit, the doctor feels that my own choice to not swim to avoid an accident is wise, but he believes I should be able to return to the pool within the next month depending on how things go. He is a strong advocate for exercise to keep me strong as far as my CP goes, and he feels low-impact exercise is best. I am personally surprised by his take on this, and I think I will wait a little longer so I feel comfortable with where I am at. Thanks for your comments.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 04-12-2010
CoachSuzanne CoachSuzanne is offline
Coach
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 2,453
CoachSuzanne
Default

Wonderful to hear that you have such a great attitude. I didn't know from prevoius posts (prior to this thread) that you have CP. I agree that swimming is in a great activity to help you keep and maintain muscle tone.

Your question seemed to be about whether swimming itself would decrease your siezure activity...that seems to be the unanswerable question, not the question of whether or not you should swim.

I hope my first response did not seem to be too harsh.

Best of luck in your recovery, but most important, keep up the great attitude.
__________________
Suzanne Atkinson, MD
Coach of 4 time USA Triathlon Triathlete of the Year, Kirsten Sass
Steel City Endurance, LTD
Fresh Freestyle

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 04-12-2010
westyswoods westyswoods is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Rio, Wisconsin
Posts: 564
westyswoods
Default

Goggles,

Thanks for the clarifications and I like Coach Suzzanne wish you the very best in your journey forward. Hope you understand my response was a generalization as to my past experiences with all types of seizure activities. If only all were as aware and accepting of their conditions as you, thanks so much for your sharing. Happy laps to you and keep us posted.

Westy
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 05:33 AM.


Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.