Today was our visit to the Neurologist at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center (aka Baptist Hospital). We spent an hour with the doctor. He was very thorough and caring with a friendly sense of humor. He pretty much confirmed what we already knew (or actually what we don't know). So here is a brief explanation of where we stand with Carol's seizure condition...
The Doc at Baptists offered his "best guess" that the seizures were indeed caused by a viral encephalitis. He was concerned however by the severity of the initial onset of six seizures. He confirmed that the exact cause will likely never be identified. He was optimistic with his prognosis though and suggested that additional seizures may be infrequent or even non existent. It may take several more months to determine what the long term outcome will be.
It seems that some type of trigger - perhaps scar tissue from the virus, or some other unknown cause - exists in her brain that acts as a focus for the seizures. The reason for her last seizure is not clearly understood, but the condition apparently was exacerbated by stress and sleep deprivation. Since March, however, she has been seizure free even with some stress and exhaustion added into the mix. That seems to be good news but we will continue to closely monitor her condition.
Carol will stay on her course of medication for two more years and undergo some additional tests over the next few months. She continues to be restricted in her driving, but will likely be cleared next month if she continues seizure free. Her memory is nearly restored and she is just about back to her old self. We are very fortunate that her mental and motor skills were not permanently damaged. As we have previously acknowledged, this entire event has left us with a new and thankful perspective on life, our faith, family and friends.
Thanks to everyone who has kept us in thoughts and prayers. We sincerely appreciate all the loving support we have received and continue to receive. Hopefully one day we can return the favor.