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Old 06-16-2011, 01:03 AM
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Sense of smell, loud noises


Do any of you have less tolerance for extreme odors now. I am still on Keppra XR and I have extreme difficulty dealing with strong cologne or perfume, cigarette smoke or other strong odors. Today it was like someone was screaming in my face! Loud noises also destroy my ability to concentrate on anything. I don't know if it is the Keppra causing this but I was OK with all of this before................

Anyone else?

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Old 06-16-2011, 08:55 AM
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Hi Wally,

Hypersensitivity (to both sounds and smells) is sometimes related to migraine and some seizures. so it could be a shift in your seizure patterns. As to whether the Keppra is responsible for the shift in sensitivity, it's hard to say. Googling found a few references to others developing smell sensitivity with Keppra.
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:28 PM
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I was on Keppra for about a year, and I don't think that I ever really noticed a sensitivity to smells. There was just that weird smell when I had a seizure. Now I am on Topamax, with no Keppra, and I am very sensative to certain smells, but not to sounds. We can't use scented candles anymore, and peoples cologne and perfume can really bother me. The weird thing is that it is not all the time. Sometimes I don't notice at all, and others it does seem to scream in my face...
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Old 06-16-2011, 08:50 PM
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I think my senses increased/became hypersensitive around the same time my epilepsy was diagnosed (twenty some years ago). I think I was taking phenobarbitol. I stopped wearing certain materials and jewelry. Odors became more obnoxious. Then later it felt as though my hearing became better. I remember asking two doctors if that was possible, because I was often told to speak up and if I could turn the volume up. I was told hearing couldn't increase. I have been on multiple medications and it has not had an impact on my senses, they have remained hyper. I am on keppra xr and topiramate.
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Old 06-17-2011, 05:50 AM
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I'm on Lamictal.

I can't stand the smell of cigarette smoke, but i think it's more to do with how I just can't get why someone with perfect health would risk it! Some perfumes can seem very strong alright. Body Odour is the worst!!

When I was a teenager, I had alot of problems concentrating if there was alot of noise ... from when I was around 14 (epilepsy disgnosed when 17), and it caused alot of problems ... and I had been fine before that. I'm not so sensitive to noise now, but I still can't concentrate on my work at all if there are people talking alot in the office.
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Old 06-17-2011, 05:58 AM
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yes,I cant understand what I am watching or reading if there is talking or other noise going on and my sense of smell is very strong also.Also,my taste is off so that after a couple bites,it tastes vaguely like soap-but this i attribute to the zonergran because I never had that before.But my senses have always been wacky and my doc says its where the seizures are located
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Old 06-18-2011, 08:05 PM
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I know last night there was a man near me smoking a cigar, I thought I was going to throw up. I think it just had to do to with the cigar however because people tell me they reek.
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Old 06-19-2011, 07:07 AM
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I just read something interesting....apparently certain diseases that affect nervous systems can affect hearing -for the better. I'm not sure how many others have developed seizures due to an illness, but if anything good came out of me having meningitis (I know, but that's 1 way to say "thanks for the help with my hearing, bacteria!") *giggle* it gave me ears darn near good as a dog! (I've got earplugs in when I've got a vacuum going!) I was up by my parents 1 day when from about 15 feet away across the living room I heard something making a little ticking noise. I looked around and looked over by Ma -it seemed louder over there. I walked over, looked down, and I'm like "uhhhhh....Ma, that's your wristwatch I hear." Sometimes I can't believe myself how good my ears are.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:53 AM
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Interesting... I have idiopathic intracranial hypertension (psudotumor cerebri), which is another neurological disorder, and many people with this disorder say they have the hearing of a bat. In other words, they can hear a pin drop 50 feet away. I don't seem to have acquired this. Don't know if that's good, bad, or indifferent.
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Old 06-20-2011, 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by DayDreamer View Post:
I was often told to speak up and if I could turn the volume up. I was told hearing couldn't increase.
Oh, how weird! I'm always being asked what I said because I speak so low, and other people sound like they're talking ridiculously loud. I also get asked to turn up the volume all the time. I get these crazy looks all the time, too, when trying to explain the things I hear (that no one else does).
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Old 06-21-2011, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Day View Post:
Oh, how weird! I'm always being asked what I said because I speak so low, and other people sound like they're talking ridiculously loud. I also get asked to turn up the volume all the time. I get these crazy looks all the time, too, when trying to explain the things I hear (that no one else does).
Are you my lost twin? If that doesn't sound exactly like what I always hear from everyone! (Well, Pa doesn't count -after years of being around farm impliment manufacturing punch presses and around army tanks before that -without earplugs I might add.....) But everyone else in my family looks at me like "HUH? What the heck? how on earth can you hear that?"
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Endless View Post:
Interesting... I have idiopathic intracranial hypertension (psudotumor cerebri), which is another neurological disorder, and many people with this disorder say they have the hearing of a bat. In other words, they can hear a pin drop 50 feet away. I don't seem to have acquired this. Don't know if that's good, bad, or indifferent.
I also have Psuedotumor Cerebri...weird stuff. I just can't figure out much about it. I was diagnosed about 2 years prior to being diagnosed with left temporal lobe epilepsy. Do you know if they are related in any way? Or maybe extreme weight gain could cause any of this?
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Old 06-21-2011, 07:34 AM
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Hi kmcbrooks,

There is a connection between ptc and weight -- statistically it's most common in obese women of childbearing age. In some cases, losing weight can help with symptoms. And the symptoms can appear as temporal lobe epilepsy. You should check out this thread by Endless where she discusses her intracranial hypertension: http://www.coping-with-epilepsy.com/...tension-11306/
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Old 06-21-2011, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Wally View Post:
Do any of you have less tolerance for extreme odors now. I am still on Keppra XR and I have extreme difficulty dealing with strong cologne or perfume, cigarette smoke or other strong odors. Today it was like someone was screaming in my face! Loud noises also destroy my ability to concentrate on anything. I don't know if it is the Keppra causing this but I was OK with all of this before................

Anyone else?

Bueller?
Strong perfume smells make me have seizures. It never bothered me until about 3 years after I was diagnosed with epilepsy. For me, new "triggers" have made themselves known every few years, so this may just be a new one for you.
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:33 PM
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Incense sometimes bothers me.



And I like Incense, too.
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Old 06-27-2011, 05:53 PM
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the other day I smelled cinnamon at starbucks at the sugar island thing - another customer was putting some in her drinks
I usually really like cinnamon but at that time (during a span of a few days during which I knew I was having some sort of auras/simple partial seizures or something ongoing) it smelled totally disgusting
I think it may have had to do with something else also but I'd rather not go into it
and also, I'm a smoker, regualr smoker - but sometimes the smell of my own smoke is repulsive, but it lasts only for about 5 seconds at a time, and is very sporadic
I smelled a lot of weird tar smell earlier today

I've forgotten what the topic was...

and quite often noises seem to really change timbre - like it'll be a bass/treble timbre change, the waveform shape, like, from a sine wave to a square wave or a more digitized sound, in real life
I get tinnitus quite a lot lately too
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Old 06-27-2011, 06:07 PM
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Im on 3000mgs of Keppra XR and I dont have any problems with sensativity to smells. But everyone is different. Have things gotten better or worse since you first posted this?
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Old 06-27-2011, 08:35 PM
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About the same. It varies from day to day depending on the balance of things....................
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:32 PM
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I've always been very sensitive to loud noises. Could that be a general characteristic of people who have or develop epilepsy?
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Old 08-10-2011, 06:52 PM
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I'm not sure if hypersensitivity is common across the board in people with epilepsy. It does play a role in reflex seizures, which are experienced by about 6% of people with epilepsy. Reflex seizures are ones that occur as a direct response to a particular stimulus or event. The most common variety is photosensitivity, but other triggers can be things like smells, music, sensations, etc.

A subset of reflex seizures are "startle seizures", usually provoked by loud noises or sudden surprises. The surprise aspect is the trigger rather than the noise (or smell, touch, sight, etc.).
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