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Beliefs of a traditional rural Indian family towards naturalistic and faith healing for treating epilepsy: a case study
  1. Sudip Bhattacharya1,
  2. Amarjeet Singh2
  1. 1Community Medicine, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India
  2. 2School of Public Health, PGIMER, Chandigarh, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Sudip Bhattacharya, drsudip81{at}


In this case study, we describe our experiences with a rural poor family from north India that initially contacted faith healers for treatment of their child who was having symptoms suggestive of epilepsy, but the seizures continued even after this. The family migrated to a city, where they started allopathic treatment, but eventually they had to discontinue it as there was no apparent relief. Again, they went back to their native village and restarted the treatment from the faith healer.

This case study highlights the fact that in spite of the significant development of medical science, many questions pertaining to epilepsy treatment are still unanswered. Such dissatisfaction with the allopathic treatment of epilepsy is very common. Complexity of the disease and high cost of modern medication, side effects of drugs, efficient but heavy treatment protocols and unpredictable outcome are responsible for continued practice of people consulting faith healers for treatment of epilepsy. However, these remain unnoticed and undocumented.

  • drugs and medicines
  • neurology (drugs and medicines)
  • global health
  • neurology
  • epilepsy and seizures
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  • Contributors SB and AS have conceptualised, written and edited the whole manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Parental/guardian consent obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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