The Epilepsy Foundation’s annual Heroes Night Gala took place at the Field Museum on Friday, February 20, 2015. United States Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth was honored with the Distinguished Richard N. Rovner Heroes Award for her unwavering commitment to people with disabilities. Nicole Gross and Margaret Storey were honored with the Heroes Award for Inspirational Commitment for their advocacy work to successfully amend an Illinois law, making epilepsy one of the conditions for which medical marijuana may be prescribed. The event was touching, as well as fun… Here are some of the highlights!
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The 2015 Heroes Night Gala shows everyone a great time and raises much needed funding for EFGC’s programs and services
The Honorable Tammy Duckworth, United States Congresswoman, will be honored as the recipient of the Richard N. Rovner Hero Award for her outstanding commitment to people living with disabilities at the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago’s annual Heroes Night Gala on February 20, 2015. In 2004, Duckworth was deployed to Iraq as a Blackhawk helicopter pilot for the Illinois Army National Guard. She was one of the first Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Freedom until her helicopter was hit by an RPG on November 12, 2004. Duckworth lost her legs and partial use of her right arm in the explosion and was awarded a Purple Heart for her combat injuries. In 2006 she became Director of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs, during this time she became very active in seeking treatment and funding for traumatic brain injuries to veterans. In 2009, President Obama appointed Duckworth to be Assistant Secretary of Veterans Affairs. Duckworth ran for Congress in 2012 to advocate for the practical solutions and cooperation needed to rebuild our economy and ensure that every American has a chance to achieve the American Dream.
The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Chicago is offering our college scholarships again for the 2015/2016 academic school year – apply for one today!
The marijuana seeds can soon be planted. In a move that surprised advocates of the medical marijuana program, Gov. Bruce Rauner’s administration on Monday announced it would issue most of the coveted licenses to grow and sell the medical product.
Carolyn and Mike Burkhead of downstate Maryville do not know what they are going to do. Their 3-year-old daughter Mira has a form of epilepsy that subjects her to severe, debilitating seizures. Her parents have tried nine different medications to treat Mira’s illness, but so far none have worked. The Burkheads’ last hope is cannabidiol, or CBD, a key ingredient in cannabis plants that does not have psycho-active properties, but has shown promise in the treatment of epilepsy. They had hoped that legal CBD, under the pilot medical marijuana program that began Jan. 1, would by available by now. So far it isn’t.
‘Microlesions’ in epilepsy discovered by novel technique in a study conducted by newly elected EFGC Board Member, Jeffery Loeb, MD
Using an innovative technique combining genetic analysis and mathematical modeling with some basic sleuthing, researchers have identified previously undescribed microlesions in brain tissue from epileptic patients. The millimeter-sized abnormalities may explain why areas of the brain that appear normal can produce severe seizures in many children and adults with epilepsy.
Lisa Thomas is hoping there is a cure for the cost to cure. Thomas, whose 16-year-old son Ryan has epilepsy that causes seizures, takes less than two months to blow past the family’s annual $3,000 deductible because of the high copay costs for her son’s medication. She said it’s not unusual to hit the $10,000 out-of-pocket maximum in copay expenses in six months.