Joseph's Story (teen)

Joseph went on the Modified Atkins Diet 7 years ago. He had absence seizures that were not typical and they started when he was 11. He ended up having terrible reactions to EVERY medication he tried. The worst, and most terrifying, was when he began having anaphylactic shock type symptoms - hives, wheezing and throat tightening. The first time, all of the symptoms occurred together. He had been weaning off of Depakote and onto Lamictal. He had just taken his last dose of Depakote the day before. Even after stopping the Lamictal and beginning a journey of many trials with different medications, the anaphylactic shock symptoms continued to occur. Sometimes the hives, wheezing and throat tightening would happen together and other times just one symptom would occur. He also experienced varied and obscure side-effects in addition to the anaphylactic shock, with each new medication he tried. He saw several specialists as well as his neurologists, but we were passed on to the next specialist when no cause for the anaphylactic shock symptoms could be discerned. In addtion, he was having 100 sub-clinical seizures per hour.I had heard about the ketogenic diet and I asked that my son be able to try LGIT but was told, "no", as the diet, at that time, was too new. I asked if he could try MAD (Modified Atkins Diet). The head of neurology at the hospital told us that it would not work for a teenager with his type of seizures but that we could try it. How wrong she was! Within 3 months he was seizure free and no longer had the anaphylactic shock symptoms. He was given the 'all clear' after another year and gradually weaned off of the diet. He is now nearly 21, is in college and is working part-time. He wants to become an actuary. He lived, worked and traveled in Europe when he was 18. He has a girlfriend he likes a great deal and leads a full and unrestricted life. He has never looked back