A systematic overview - a decade of research : The information and counselling needs of people with epilepsy
This paper explores the background to epilepsy in terms of medical impact and psychosocial effects. The argument that information and counselling may be central to the person with epilepsy is explored. The evidence from primary research published between 1990 and 2000 investigating the information and counselling needs of people with epilepsy is appraised and synthesized. This paper seeks to answer the following questions: What are the information and counselling needs of people with epilepsy? What are the preferred formats, timing and delivery of information and counselling? What are the outcomes of information giving and counselling for people with epilepsy? The review suggests that there are unmet needs for personal and general information about epilepsy which may include individual or group education and counselling. Information related to gaining control for people with epilepsy and targeted public education may contribute to improved quality of life for people with epilepsy. Information is required which is individually relevant and could be delivered in small groups or as part of an individual counselling service. Specialist epilepsy clinics and specialist nurses can improve patient knowledge and communication and provide an effective and high quality service for people with epilepsy.