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AUDIO: Harrogate man with rare condition demands support

AUDIO: Harrogate man with rare condition demands support

Published at 6:03am 29th October 2015. (Updated at 1:20pm 29th October 2015)

A Harrogate man has been speaking exclusively to Stray FM to raise awareness of a rare medical condition which has dominated his life. 

24-year-old James DeSantos has been suffering from seizures since he was at secondary school.

Doctors thought he had epilepsy, but he's recently been diagnosed with NEAD, which stands for Non Epileptic Attack Disorder.  

These dissociative seizures are often mistaken for epilepsy and can be very difficult to diagnose.

It's estimated that around 15,000 people in the UK have NEAD, but experts think this figure could be higher, as many are misdiagnosed with epilepsy.

The seziures are triggered by past trauma, stress or anxiety.

James says his fits are caused by the trauma of being bullied at school and being raped at the age of 18.

He's now speaking out to encourage others to get help, in the hope of saving people from the condition.

James is also making a documentary about NEAD. 

We must warn you that the following interview contains details which you may find upsetting:

You can find out more about NEAD at www.nonepilepticattackdisorder.org.uk

If you've been affected by James's story, male rape charity Survivors UK offers a confidential web chat service.

More information at www.survivorsuk.org/ways-we-can-help/web-chat