The Disease Burden Due to Epilepsy in Rural China

  • D. Ding
  • W. Z. Wang
  • Z. Hong
Reference work entry


The World Health Organization (WHO), in cooperation with the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) and the International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE) launched the Global Campaign Against Epilepsy (GCAE) in an attempt to bring epilepsy “out of the shadows” and to improve the acceptability, treatment, services and prevention of epilepsy world-wide. As part of this campaign and under the auspices of the WHO and the Ministry of Health of China, a demonstration project was implemented in rural areas in six non-contiguous provinces of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). In the sample areas, the lifetime prevalence and prevalence of  active epilepsy in rural China were 6.0–7.0/1,000 and 3.8–4.6/1,000 respectively. Sixty-three percent of people with active epilepsy had not received antiepileptic medication in the week before the survey (i.e., the  treatment gap was 63%). The disease burden of epilepsy was measured as 2.08 Disability Adjusted Life Years ( DALYs) lost per 1,000 population. The  standardized mortality ratio (SMR) of people with epilepsy was 3.9 indicating that people with epilepsy are three to four times more likely to die prematurely than those in the general Chinese population. The risk in young people with epilepsy aged 15–29 years in China is particularly high.


Standardize Mortality Ratio Premature Mortality Verbal Autopsy Proportional Mortality Rate International League Against Epilepsy 

List of Abbreviations:


anti-epileptic drug


 case fatality rate


disability adjusted life year


epilepsy management at primary health level


global burden of disease


global campaign against epilepsy


International Bureau for Epilepsy


International community-based epilepsy research group


International League Against Epilepsy


 proportional mortality rate


People’s Republic of China


standardized mortality ratio


World Health Organization


years lived with disability


years of life lost


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. Ding
    • 1
  • W. Z. Wang
    • 1
  • Z. Hong
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biostatistics and EpidemiologyInstitute of Neurology, Fudan University, WHO Collaborating Center for Research and Training in NeurosciencesShanghaiChina>

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