RESOURCE CENTRAL

Neurology Now:
doi: 10.1097/01.NNN.0000359092.87937.19
Department: Resource Central
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    Vagus Nerve Stimulation for Epilepsy

    Most insurers will pay for implantation of the VNS for intractable epilepsy, including Medicare and Medicaid. Because insurance companies may have different requirements, people interested in the VNS should inquire directly with their insurance provider. In addition, the VNS Therapy Access Program, sponsored by Cyberonics (cyberonics.com; 888-867-7846) provides information and assistance regarding insurance such as prior authorizations, letters of medical necessity, additional information about VNS, and assistance with appeals and denials. A nurse case manager can be reached at 877-610-1180.

    If you are interested in participating in a clinical trial, discuss this possibility with your neurologist. One study, currently recruiting patients at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, in Lebanon, NH, and University Hospital, in Ghent, Belgium, is trying to determine which electrical stimulation settings of amperage, duration, and frequency are best for seizure control. The study is recruiting people with at least one seizure a month with alteration of consciousness, taking at least one antiepileptic drug, and who are 16 years or older. More complete information regarding this study (NCT00782249) is available at clinicaltrials.gov.

    Cyberonics is sponsoring a health outcomes study to evaluate the effect of the VNS on quality of life as measured by the Quality of Life in Epilepsy (QOLIE-89) questionnaire, as well as seizure control and adverse events. This study is open to patients 16 years or older with intractable epilepsy. People interested in this study should contact Cyberonics regarding clinical trial NCT00522418.

    Financial assistance to travel to an epilepsy center that can provide the VNS may be available from the Epilepsy Foundation. For more information, contact the Epilepsy Foundation national office at 800-470-1655, x3726.

    The Alzheimer's Association and Alzheimer's Foundation of America (see next column) provide information for Alzheimer's disease patients and caregivers.

    Elder Rage, elderrage.com/Links.asp, Alzheimer's resources from caregiver, advocate Jacqueline Marcell.

    American Stroke Association, strokeassociation.org, For general stroke info.

    National Association of Area Agencies, on Aging, n4a.org, This organization helps older people who have, disabilities to live at home.

    National Institute on Aging: Alzheimer's, Disease Education & Referral Center, nia.nih.gov/alzheimers

    National Stroke Association, stroke.org, For general stroke info.

    Veterans-Express, veterans-express.com, This organization helps seniors and, veterans with benefits and assisted living.

    Well Spouse Association, wellspouse.org, This nonprofit supports and educates, spousal caregivers.

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    Assistance Directory

    For a full listing of patient organizations, go to neurologynow.com

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    HELP FOR ALL NEUROLOGICAL DISORDERS

    American Academy of, Neurology Foundation, aan.com/go/foundation, 1-800-879-1960

    The Brain Matters.org, AAN patient website, thebrainmatters.org

    National Institute of Neurological, Disorders and Stroke, ninds.nih.gov

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    ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE

    Alzheimer's Association, alz.org, 1-800-272-3900

    Alzheimer's Disease Education, and Referral Center, alzheimers.org, 1-800-438-4380

    Alzheimer's Foundation of America, alzfdn.org, 1-866-232-8484

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    AUTISM

    Autism Society of America, autism-society.org, 1-800-3AUTISM (1-800-328-8476)

    Autism Speaks, Inc., autismspeaks.org, 212-252-8584

    Global and Regional Asperger, Syndrome Partnership, grasp.org, 1-888-474-7277

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    BRAIN TUMOR

    American Brain Tumor Association, abta.org, 800-886-2282

    Children's Brain Tumor Foundation, cbtf.org, 1-866-CBT-HOPE (228-4673)

    National Brain Tumor Society, Braintumor.org, 1-800-934-2873

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    CEREBRAL PALSY

    United Cerebral Palsy, ucp.org, 1-800-872-5827

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    DYSTONIA

    Benign Essential Blepharospasm, Research Foundation, blepharospasm.org, 409-832-0788

    Dystonia Foundation, dystonia-foundation.org, 1-800-377-DYST (1-800-377-3978)

    National Spasmodic Dysphonia, Association, dysphonia.org, 1-800-795-6732

    Spasmodic Torticollis, spasmodictorticollis.org, 1-888-445-4588

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    EPILEPSY AND SEIZURES

    Citizens United for Research, in Epilepsy (CURE), CUREepilepsy.org, 312-255-1801

    Epilepsy Foundation, epilepsyfoundation.org, 1-800-332-1000

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    HEADACHE/MIGRAINE

    National Headache Foundation, headaches.org, 1-888-NHF-5552 (1-888-643-5552)

    Migraine Research Foundation, migraineresearchfoundation.org, 212-249-5402

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    HUNTINGTON'S DISEASE

    Hereditary Disease Foundation, hdfoundation.org, 212-928-2121

    Huntington's Disease Society of America, hdsa.org, 1-800-345-HDSA (1-800-345-4372)

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    HYDROCEPHALUS

    Children's Hydrocephalus Support Group, hydrosupport.org, 425-482-0479

    Hydrocephalus Association, hydroassoc.org, 1-888-598-3789

    National Hydrocephalus Foundation, nhfonline.org, 1-888-857-3434

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    MULTIPLE SCLEROSIS

    MSFriends, msfriends.org, 1-877-MSFRIENDS

    MSWorld, msworld.org

    Multiple Sclerosis Association of America, msassociation.org, 1-800-532-7667

    Multiple Sclerosis Foundation, msfocus.org, 1-800-225-6495

    National Multiple Sclerosis Society, nationalmssociety.org, 1-800-FIGHT-MS (1-800-344-4867)

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    MYASTHENIA GRAVIS

    Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America, myasthenia.org, 1-800-541-5454

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    NEUROMUSCULAR DISEASES

    ALS Association, alsa.org, 1-800-782-4747

    Charcot-Marie-Tooth Association, charcot-marie-tooth.org, 610-499-92641-800-606-CMTA (2682)

    Kennedy's Disease Association, kennedysdisease.org, 559-658-5950

    Moebius Syndrome Foundation, moebiussyndrome.com, 1-660-834-3406

    Muscular Dystrophy Association, mda.org, 1-800-FIGHT-MD (1-800-344-4863)

    Neuropathy Association, neuropathy.org, 212-692-0662

    Spastic Paraplegia Foundation, Inc., sp-foundation.org, 1-877-773-4483

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    PAIN

    American Pain Foundation, painfoundation.org, 1-888-615-PAIN (1-888-615-7246)

    National Foundation for the, Treatment of Pain, paincare.org, 713-862-9332

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    PARKINSON'S DISEASE & MOVEMENT DISORDERS

    American Parkinson Disease Association, apdaparkinson.org, 1-800-223-2732

    International Essential Tremor Foundation, essentialtremor.org, 1-888-387-3667

    Lewy Body Dementia Association, lbda.org

    Michael J. Fox Foundation, for Parkinson's Research, michaeljfox.org, 1-800-708-7644

    National Ataxia Foundation, ataxia.org, 763-553-0020

    National Parkinson Foundation, parkinson.org, 1-800-327-4545

    Parkinson's Disease Foundation, pdf.org, 1-800-457-6676

    Society for Progressive, Supranuclear Palsy, curepsp.org, 1-800-457-4777

    WE MOVE (Worldwide Education &, Awareness for Movement Disorders), wemove.org, 212-875-8312

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    SLEEP

    National Sleep Foundation, sleepfoundation.org, 202-347-3471

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    STROKE

    American Stroke Association, strokeassociation.org, 1-888-4-STROKE (1-888-478-7653)

    Give Me Five For, Strokegiveme5forstroke.org

    National Aphasia Association, aphasia.org, 1-800-922-4622

    National Stroke Association, stroke.org, 1-800-787-6537

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    TOURETTE SYNDROME

    Tourette Syndrome Association, tsa-usa.org, 718-224-2999

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    TRAUMA

    Brain Injury Association of, Americabiausa.org, 1-800-444-6443

    Brain Trauma Foundation, braintrauma.org, 212-772-0608

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    Expressions of Courage

    For people living with epilepsy, art can be a self-expressive, visual demonstration of how it feels to live with this serious neurological condition.

    Figure. No caption a...

    Expressions of Courage® is a national contest for people with epilepsy. The contest will be open for entries from May 11, 2009, through August 28, 2009. A panel of epilepsy advocates, art industry representatives, and healthcare experts will serve as contest judges and announce the winning artwork in November. Entries are judged based on creativity and the ability to bring to life the experiences of living with epilepsy.

    Artwork may be created in ink, pencil, crayon, paint, or a combination of these materials, and must be on paper or board no larger than 8 by 11 inches. Contest entries will be categorized into three age groups: children ages 12 years old and younger; teens ages 13 to 17; and adults 18 years of age and older. Multiple submissions will be accepted.

    Winners will be highlighted on the Expressions of Courage® Web site. A few winning pieces will also be chosen by curators from the Society for the Arts in Healthcare for display in a traveling art exhibition comprised of more than 20 winning entries from the past seven contests. Please send original artwork and a completed entry form to:

    Expressions of Courage®, 389 Pittstown Road, Pittstown, NJ 08867

    To download the Expressions of Courage® entry form and review the rules and regulations, go to expressionsofcourage.com/rules/rules.html or call the Contest Help Line at 800-224-4935 with questions.

    Expressions of Courage® is a program developed and funded by Ortho-McNeil Neurologics®, Division of Ortho-McNeil-Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc, in partnership with the Epilepsy Foundation.

    ©2009 American Academy of Neurology