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Harry - Epilepsy

Age at interview: 20
Age at diagnosis: 7
Brief Outline: Harry is a 20-year-old college student. He is single and lives at home with his parents. Ethnic background / nationality' White British.
Background: Harry has had epilepsy since he was 7. He has had fairly uncontrolled tonic clonic and absence seizures. He changed medication 6 months before the interview and has been doing much better since.

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Harry trusts his consultant and says 'he's changed his life'. His epilepsy is discussed in terms of his whole life, and he can ask questions without his parents being there.

Harry trusts his consultant and says 'he's changed his life'. His epilepsy is discussed in terms of his whole life, and he can ask questions without his parents being there.

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Harry' Yeah, my consultant is very good now. He's a nice guy, he's reassuring, he's realistic as well.

Mum' And you feel confident, we feel all confident.

Harry' I can trust him and I feel confident about what he says and I take his advice any day. I've always actually been like that 'cos, there's quite a few people who sometimes think they know better than their doctor, but I don't, I do what the doctor says within reason really.

Mum' He's been the best overall I think.

Harry' Yeah, my doctor, my consultant now, he is a very good, very good doctor. He's actually changed my life really.

What do you mean?

Mum' Yeah, he has, he's the only one.

Harry' He's well, He's stopped me having seizures really at the moment and I've gone to him and asked him questions. I remember one time I wanted to ask him about a personal question, and I asked is it okay if my parents aren't there, he just said 'right out' and he just told my parents.

Mum' He's been great.

Harry' Told my parents to go, like I'm sorry you've got to go, and I need to talk to him on my own.

Mum' Yeah, and then he sent you out.

Harry' Yeah, and then he sent me out to talk to my parents. But he's a nice guy. I think it's he, cos unlike all, most doctors just put, I think they put you on a drug and they don't think hang on a sec, what's this gonna do to this guy, what's this gonna prevent him doing, what's this gonna be like on his school work, but my doctor he, you know like'

Mum' He's always (willing) to help.

Harry' He's willing to wait you know, like till after my exams to. I'm gonna come off one of my drugs and unlike the doctors who'd say right I'm gonna do this, and he'd go, he said, like 'when do you want to do it?' And he's asked me the questions and he's asked me what I want to do. And I think there's not enough out there who do ask those kind of questions.

Mum' But also he's explained everything hasn't he?

Harry' He's also said to me and like that he's, 'cos he looks at me as a basically a young lad who wants to go out and enjoy himself, and he understands that.
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