Patients & Visitors

When Kade’s Best-Rated Care Began, his Seizures Ended


Brooke Ashton will never forget the day her three-year-old Kade began to show signs of something dreadfully wrong. He was eating cereal for breakfast in his highchair, when suddenly he seemed to freeze in place.

“It seemed like forever but it probably only was five or ten seconds,” Brooke says. She called his name but he wouldn’t respond. “It wasn’t what I thought a seizure would look like.”

But that’s exactly what it was, as Brooke soon discovered. Rushing him to the closest emergency room, tests confirmed Kade had epilepsy.

Not Getting any Better

Under his neurologist’s care, Kade’s seizures began to escalate rapidly. Starting at one or two a day, it wasn’t long before that number increased to 100 or more. Obviously, the medications he’d been prescribed just weren’t working.

“He was having more and more, and different types of seizures,” Brooke says. “The doctor seemed concerned, but not as concerned as we felt that he should be.” Worried about the worsening situation, Brooke began looking for a second opinion. That’s when she found Barrow Neurological Institute at Phoenix Children’s.

The Team with the Plan

The day after Brooke got her referral, Kade had a terrible episode. “We woke up that morning and he was having seizure after seizure after seizure,” Brooke remembers. She called ahead to let Phoenix Children’s know they were coming, and by the time they arrived, a team of Barrow pediatric neurologists and specialists had already met to discuss his case.

“It was wonderful because once we got there they had a plan,” Brooke says with relief.

Eight Days of Close Observation

Kade was admitted into the Pediatric Epilepsy Monitoring Unit at Phoenix Children’s Hospital where he could be put under 24-hour video monitoring and an EEG to track his activity and record his brain wave patterns. This intensive monitoring capability is unavailable anywhere else in Arizona, and it’s indispensable in helping doctors pinpoint the origins of seizures, their type, and the best treatment for them.

Over the course of a week, Barrow at Phoenix Children’s neurologists tried different medications with Kade, quickly adjusting and refining his treatment protocol as they watched his brain respond.

“They tried many different medications, different doses, different combinations,” Brooke says, “and they didn’t stop until they had determined a good combination for him.”

From 100 Seizures a day to Zero

By the time Kade left the hospital, his seizures had reduced to just one or two a day. Now armed with the proper medication, they went down to zero quickly after that, never to return.

Today, five years later, Kade is your typical eight-year-old boy. “He has no seizures. He’s off his medication. He’s happy. He’s healthy,” Brooke reports. “He just loves life.”

Learn more about the Epilepsy Program.

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