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Special dog helps epilepsy woman

11 May 07 09:32 GMT

A specially-trained dog is helping to transform the life of a young woman who has epilepsy.

Hannah Baker, 20, from Dedham in Essex, has severe epilepsy, brought on by a non-malignant tumour diagnosed when she was six years old.

Poodle Milo has been trained by the charity, Support Dogs, to spot changes to her pupils or skin tone before she has a seizure.

He then stares at her until she knows something is wrong.

Before she had Milo, Hannah used to have up to 80 seizures a day - now she has about 10 seizures each day, and most of those are small.

"Milo is like a security blanket for me," said Hannah.

"He's made a huge difference to my life and to my family's life."

Milo alerts Hannah about eight to 10 minutes before she has a seizure and she then sits down on the floor or with her back against the wall to make sure she is out of any danger.

Milo stays with her until she regains consciousness.

Hannah's mother Nicola Baker said: "I've gone from worrying about her every minute of the day to worrying about her half a dozen times a day, which is a significant difference."

Hannah says she is now more confident in doing ordinary activities such as going for a walk or making a trip to the cinema because of Milo.

"The thing inside me has met its match," she said.

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