Epilepsy - Indian context
In many developing countries, people with epilepsy do not receive appropriate treatment for their condition, a phenomenon called treatment gap (TG), which is defined as the number of people with active epilepsy not on treatment (diagnostic and therapeutic) or on inadequate treatment, expressed as a percentage of the total number with active epilepsy. The TG has two components: Those not accessing or unable to access biomedical
facilities for diagnosis and treatment and, if accessing biomedical treatment, those not adhering to the prescribed antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). The gap is reported to be influenced by various factors, including lack of access to or knowledge of AEDs, poverty, cultural beliefs, stigma, poor health delivery infrastructure, and shortage of trained professionals. The superstitions and cultural beliefs influence PWE to seek treatment from traditional healers instead of allopathic practitioners.
The magnitude of epilepsy treatment gap in India ranges from 22% among urban, middle-income people to 90% in villages. In order to reduce this gap in the context of limited resources, it would be necessary to specify the important cause of gap for a particular community and the most cost-effective resource for a particular situation