Vienna boy has half his brain removed to control seizures - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Vienna boy has half his brain removed to control seizures

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VIENNA, Ohio - A three-year-old boy from Vienna had half of his brain removed to control seizures.

When Nieko Julian was four-months-old he started having seizures that wouldn't stop. So at six months of age he underwent a dramatic surgery in which half of his brain was removed in the hopes of stopping the seizures.

Now, three years later Nieko Julian is just two months away from his fourth birthday and in those four years, this little guy has been through more than most of us will ever know.

"At one point, he was on four epileptic medications having over 100 seizures a day. It was nonstop, every few seconds he'd have a seizure," said Jennifer Julian, Nieko's mother.

After trying a cocktail of medications, Nieko's parents knew it was time to seek help and the Cleveland Clinic brought it in a way no one imagined.

Nieko had surgery that removed half of brain. "We did the operation when he was six-months-old. Removed the right side of his brain and thankfully he has been seizure free ever since," said Dr. William Bingaman from the Cleveland Clinic.

"There was no choice about it. It was just do it. It was a life of misery not being able to do anything. He wasn't meeting any of his goals as a baby that you look forward to, the milestones. He wasn't meeting any of them. He was constantly having seizures. You're constantly scared," Jennifer said.

The surgery was trying, but successful and Nieko has not had a seizure since.

He is in therapy now and the brain is re-training itself. He can never play contact sports, drive a car and while his left side of his body struggles; he's also deaf in his left ear and his vision is impaired, Nieko's family is grateful for the seemingly small moments of triumph.

"The whole right side of his body is super strong, way more strong that you can possibly imagine. His speech is still like a baby, maybe like a one and a half year old, but every day he learns a new word," Jennifer said.

"His language is developing nicely. His parents say he is more sociable," said Dr. Bingaman.

New words, new movements, new friends and a new life.

"I can see him laughing, you see him smiling, you see playing, you see him giggling. Totally different than what it would've been like because it was constant seizures every few minutes, constant seizures. So he's Nieko again," Jennifer said.

When asked if she would do it all over again, Jennifer replied, "Absolutely, in a heartbeat. This is best decision we ever made."

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