Research Fellow wins top prize for presentation

Clontarf Caste Hotel

This month a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Post-Doctoral Research Fellow from the Institute of Translational Medicine was awarded the top prize for best platform presentation at the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) British and Irish Chapter Annual Scientific Meeting.

Dr Laura Bonnett won the award for her presentation on the risk of a seizure recurrence after a breakthrough seizure and the implications for driving.  This was work undertaken collaboratively with her colleagues from the Institute Dr Graham Powell, Dr Catrin Tudur-Smith and Professor Tony Marson.

A breakthrough seizure is one occurring after at least 12 months seizure freedom whilst on treatment.

The United Kingdom based Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) require the risk of a seizure in the next 12 months following a breakthrough seizure to be less than 20%.

The work presented by Dr Bonnett attempted to identify the required time off driving to achieve this.  This work will inform policy and guidance about regaining an ordinary driving license.

ILAE is the premier professional association of doctors and other health professionals who are working in the field of epilepsy.  The organisation comprises national chapters in over 100 countries in all continents of the world.

This year’s meeting was held at Clontarf Caste Hotel in Dublin from 5th to 7th October.

The award was decided by a panel of 10 ILAE Committee members and presented by Dr Sallie Baxendale (Clinical Psychologist, University College London) and Khalid Hamandi (Consultant Neurologist, Cardiff University).

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