The Prevalence of Epilepsy in Ireland study

'The Prevalence of Epilepsy in Ireland study' image

The Prevalence of Epilepsy in Ireland Report was launched in 2009. It is the first national epilepsy prevalence study undertaken anywhere in Europe and identifies for the first time, accurate figures on the number of people with epilepsy in Ireland. The study was commissioned by Epilepsy Ireland and conducted by the UCD Centre for Disability Studies.

It appeared in the journal Epilepsia in late 2009.

The study reveals that there are up to 37,000 people with epilepsy in Ireland and that this number may be increasing.

Among its key findings are:

Five separate sources of nationwide data were examined as part of the study:

The data also shows that the rate of treated epilepsy for those aged 5 years and above varies considerably by region. The lowest rates were observed in the Eastern Region (7.9 cases per 1,000 people in 2005) while the Western Region had the highest rates (10.8 cases per 1,000 people in 2005). The condition was also found to be more prevalent as age increases and is slightly more commonly observed in men.

Epilepsy Ireland believes that the level of agreement observed across all five sources of data provides a comprehensive assessment of the prevalence of epilepsy in Ireland and the findings are broadly reflective of data coming from international studies.