Disney Star Cameron Boyce Suffered from Epilepsy Before Dying from Fatal Seizure at 20


Cameron Boyce, who starred in the Disney Channel’s television show Jessie, passed away at age 20 after having a seizure in his sleep, People reports.

His untimely death startled actors who worked with him, including Adam Sandler, who tweeted in response to his death, “Thank you, Cameron, for all you gave to us. So much more was on the way. All our hearts are broken.”

Boyce’s family said in a statement obtained by People: “It is with a profoundly heavy heart that we report that this morning we lost Cameron.” They said an ongoing medical condition was the cause of Boyce’s fatal seizure. According to the New York Daily News, Boyce suffered from epilepsy.

What is epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a neurologic condition that can cause recurring seizures. About 50 million people worldwide have the disorder, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). In the US, about 470,000 children have it, the CDC says. The CDC also reports that new epilepsy diagnoses are most common in older adults and children. Some kids outgrow epilepsy after having the condition for a few years; however, other children diagnosed with epilepsy require life-long treatment, the Epilepsy Foundation says.

Three main types of seizures are categorized by different symptoms. Someone having a complex partial seizure might appear confused; these seizures could make a person unable to verbally respond to questions. Petit mal or absence seizures cause someone to stare into space or blink rapidly. And then there’s what most people think of when they hear seizure—the grand mal or tonic-clonic seizure. Symptoms include jerking arms or legs, loss of consciousness, and body stiffening.

Epilepsy isn’t the only cause of seizures. Alcohol withdrawal, low blood sugar, high fever, and concussion can also result in a seizure.

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SOURCE: Yahoo! News, Maggie O’Neill