Dr Francis Oppong, a Psychiatric Specialist at the Okomfo Anokye Teaching Kospital (KATH), has admonished the public to seek professional help for epileptic patients rather than resorting to spiritual intervention at prayer camps.
He said epilepsy was curable with medical treatment and cautioned against over-reliance on spiritual treatment for the sickness.
He was speaking to the Ghana News Agency after a sensitization programme on epilepsy organized by the Psychiatric Unit of KATH, as part of activities to mark World Epilepsy Day on Monday.
Amongst the topics discussed were; current trend in management of epilepsy, not all abnormal behaviours are mental illness and epilepsy in children.
Dr. Oppong said attributing epilepsy to witchcraft and other spiritual causes without getting timely medical attention for sufferers, could only aggravate the conditions of patients and urged their families to seek for prompt medical attention.
He said though it was difficult to cure advanced epilepsy, it was still manageable to allow patients to live normal lives.
“Epilepsy can give you an intellectual disability if it persists for a long period, but people usually consider all abnormal behaviours resulting from epilepsy as mental disorder,” he observed.
This, he noted, was the reason why people should visit medical facilities to determine their conditions to ensure appropriate treatment.
He said epilepsy was neither genetic nor transferable and urged the public to disregard that perception and get closer to aid people when they get the episodes.