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Epilepsy

nerve networkIt has always been difficult to handle questions about how users with epilepsy respond to our intranasal light therapy, which is a form of blood irradiation therapy. This is not something that has a lot of research done on it involving the use of light irradiation therapy. Yet the bottom line is that judging from the scientific facts and evidence it should help in theory, but use it with care. We can now identify which area of the brain is affected in this condition, and there could be an array of possible causes. They could take roots in genetic factors, aging or trauma of some sort manifested over five different widely accepted classifications and other numerous syndromes. There is also a need to take into account the alleged potential of contra-indication when light irradiation therapy is being used.

The most important thing is that devices with pulsing visible light, specifically those in the range of 5-10 Hz should not be used. They are quite often used in externally applied hair growth and pain regulation treatment involving low level laser therapies. Pulsing light is a potential trigger for inducing an epileptic attack.

Having said this, a recent study by Radwan et al conducted on animals suggests that a regular daily laser irradiation at 830nM/90mW of the cortex and hippocampus regions of the brain could possibly have good results on such nervous system conditions as epilepsy.[1]

This research studied the effect of laser irradiation on the levels of neurotransmitters in the cortex and hippocampus regions of the brain of epilepsy induced mice. Taking into account this study's relevance to epilepsy via the hippocampus region, it is a hypothized mechanism for some forms of inherited epilepsy where it results from mutations of genes that allow defective sodium channels to stay open for too long thus making the neuron hyper excitable. Glutamate, an excitatory amino-acid neurotransmitter that often times is combined with sodium may be released from these neurons in substantial quantities, which triggers an excessive calcium release in these post-synaptic cells. Such large calcium releases can be neurotoxic to affected cells. The hippocampus, see the figure below, which contains a large volume of such glutamatergic neurons is especially vulnerable to epileptic seizures, subsequent spreading of excitation, and a possible neuronal death.

Radwan et al have also found that after a session of laser irradiation levels of excitatory glutamate activities were back at the original restive state thus effectively reducing epileptic activities.

Hypothesis is that hippocampus would have been more easily treated if red light of 830 nM as in infrared is directed to it via the nasal cavity. There are less tissue layers to penetrate, in particular the dense skull, so shorter wavelength than 830 nM and output energy lower than 90 mW would be sufficient for treatment. Based on this, it is feasible that our low level laser of 655 nM and 5 mW would at least achieve the task of regulating the release of active glutamic compounds systematically in the area of the hippocampus.

The cerebral cortex is like a 'skin' for a large part of the fore brain. Radwan also discovers positive results from illuminating the cerebral cortex, and it is worth noting that much of these areas are located near the nasal region so intranasal light devices are able to illuminate them. For the same reason as in the case of hippocampus one would expect similar positive outcomes using this therapy.

Summary:

  1. We would expect no negative outcome from the use of intranasal light therapy for epilepsy provided that the light is not being pulsed.
  2. We expect positive outcomes for many if not all epileptic patients resulting form the use of intranasal light therapy, the low level laser version in particular.
  3. Because many patients can be sensitive to light treatment should be monitored.

References

  1. Radwan N M, El Hay Ahmed N A, Ibrahim K M, Khedr M E, Aziz M A, Khadrawy Y A (2009). Effect of infrared laser irradiation on amino acid neurotransmitters in an epileptic animal model induced by pilocarpine. Photomed Laser Surg. 27(3): 401-409.