I just want to get input from anyone about seizure manifestation of avm patients.My husband had AVM
surgery a year ago.He fully recovered and was able to go back to work 5 months after the surgery.Since then he was on Keppra to prevent seizure though he never had one.His EEG is abnormal,

the doctor said he still need anti seizure drug. My husband is complaining of dizziness.The doctor change his medication to topamax.Within the two weeks medication he had experience loss of coordination,sluggish speech,dizzines ,mood swing ,slow comprehension.
We went back to the doctor and complain about it and he said my husband is having seizure.The doctor changed his medication to Lyrica.He got better as if nothing happens.
Our dilemma is the Doctor reported to DMV that my husband had a seizure and he cant drive.His license to drive was suspended.

Everything that my husband experience after taking topamax seems like side effect of the medication.But the doctor insist it is seizure. Now my husband cant work nor move around because he cant drive.He is capable of driving . Is an episode of seizure ground of drivers license suspension even if it already controlled by medication.W e need help how we can fight his driver’s license back.

Thanks to all in advance.

My husband had the reverse. The DMV has no record of his seizures ever being reported. After double checking everything (without specifically telling the DMV what the issue was - who know what they would have done after the fact) we found that since Jeff never lost consciousness, it does not warrant a suspension of his license. The only issue he has was since he voluntarily stopped driving he didn’t noticed that his license has expired and was not allowed into the courts without a current ID (he’s a lawyer).

We’re in California btw.


Thanks for responding.That was a very informative site.

Jan Verstraete said:

Hi Cristina,
I would suggest that you can contact the Epilepsy Foundation. You can find the address and phone number of a local branch on their website ( They can give more information about epilepsy and driving - the rules are different from state to state - and the possibility of appeal.

Good luck.


Not sure if all states do this, but here if your DR is changing your meds and you have a seizure, it does not revoke your driver’s license.

ron, KS

Cristina all I can tell you is I did take topamax and I had horrible side effects. Pretty much the same thing your husband experienced. I stop taking it on my own only because my doctor was trying it on me and I did not stop my other seizure medications. I am currently taking Keppra and Tegretol and it does have side effects but only thing that works for me. It took me a while to get use to the Keppra but I am doing well on it now. I have been on it for years. I knew the side effects where not seizures for me. I can tell you when I am having a seizure and I have all types I don’t get sluggish speech I actually am not able to speak coherently. I make no sense in what I am saying. Everyone is different though so the doctor is obligated to report it. It is so frustrating I know I have loss my license a lot but taking a chance is scary. Was this is first time? How long did they take them for? Each state is different so check with your DMV.

I have now lived in 2 states since my seizures started in June of 2001,
the law in Maryland at that time was NO ONE could turn you into the
DMV (Dept. of Motor Vech) not even your doctor One day in Dec 2001 I had a doctors appt. and
every one that could help was working that day.
I said to myself I FEEL GREAT! What could happen? So off I went in my car
I was on a 4-land road in Maryland called East-West Highway Route-410
no medium strip, 2 lanes of traffic going in each direction.
8:30am in the morning while driving I went in to a seizure with a police officer
in the car right behind me, the officer told me later at the hospitial that I went
back and forth in the 4 lanes of traffic with cars going in all directions to avoid
me at the same time I was going faster and faster, I guess my foot just mashed
the gas pedal. At some point my car went up over the curb and i started to head for a house
as I got close to the house 60 yards from going into the house I turned the wheel
and hit a large tree head on. I woke up at the hospitial hours later and nothing
made since. Long story just to say that I still had my drivers license on me
the police officer did not/could not take it from me. In Maryland at that time 2001
the only person who could tell the DMV that I had a seizure problem was me and I
was not even telling my friends much less the DMV at that point.
After a botched surgery at the NIH / NINDS in June of 2002, I was told that the
AVM was removed by the Surgeon at the NINDS. 3 month after my Right
temporal lobectomy the seizures started again.

It’s now 2009 I now live in Southwest Florida and I still had my drivers license I had stop
driving cars but kept my license for ID that’s what I told myself but I knew
why, it was that feeling of freedom. Or to take a chance one day and go drive
a car. Dumb move. I got on a scotter here in Florida to go to Home depot because
I felt great again long story to say I went into a seizure and hit 2 cars waiting at
a red light flipped the scotter over land in a intersection where I was almost hit
by another car, OH YEA! No helmut on.
Florida came after me and wanted all my medical records, my medical
records are so backwards, I just turned
in my license and no longer drive anything except by Bike (pedal) and Nike’s.

Thanks for sharing your experience.MY husband had the accident last October but I do’nt think its because of seizure.t was really an accident.The doctor who check him for the first time,interview him and concluded he had a seizure last October.Doctors are protecting themselves for any possible lawsuit in the future.He reported to DMV, he has a seizure disorder of course DMV will take his license.He is very capable of driving and very careful.With my husbands personality he will not jeopardize himself or other people if he will drive.We just hope he can drive again because I have two kids.He is on disability right now and I know it will make him feel good if he could take the kids at school if ever he will not go back to work.
We had a hearing last week at DMV hopefully the outcome will be positive.