Music-Induced Seizures: Mom Suffers An Epileptic Seizure Every Time She Hears A Ne-Yo Song

Ne-Yo
British woman suffers an epileptic seizure every time she hears Ne-Yo singing. Flickr

For R&B lovers, the melodic and soothing tones of Ne-Yo’s voice make for the perfect listen. Zoe Fennessy, 26, on the other hand, is not soothed by the pop star’s voice. In fact, it has quite the opposite effect. The young British mother suffers from epileptic seizures that cause severe nausea and lack of mobility whenever she hears one of the Grammy-nominated artist’s songs.

“I don’t dislike Ne-Yo or his music, it just dislikes me unfortunately,” Fennessy told SWNS. “I’ll be walking around the supermarket doing my food shopping and I have to put my earphones in to listen to my own music just in case it comes on. It’s the same with most shops. I have to walk in with my ear phones in at first just to make sure they don’t have Ne-Yo on.”

Fennessy suffered her first seizure back on New Year’s Day in 2006 following intermittent bouts of sickness, fatigue, and stress. When the frequency of her seizures increased to six a day in 2008, her doctor ordered up a brain scan and quickly diagnosed her with epilepsy. After hearing Ne-Yo’s collaboration with Pitbull on “Give Me Everything,” Fennessy suffered her first music-induced seizure.  

“If he ever releases a greatest hits album, it’s going to be a nightmare,” Fennessy added. “Whenever I hear the first few beats of the song I have to drop whatever I am doing and run. People might think it is funny — and I can laugh at it myself — but it has taken over my life. It’s ruined my life.”

In hopes of regaining some sense of normalcy in her everyday life, Fennessy underwent a six-hour-long operation in June to remove part of her left temporal lobe. Her doctors believe this is the area of her brain where her seizures occur out of. Although the procedure reduced symptoms of her epilepsy, her condition still reacts to the sound of Ne-Yo’s voice.

While seizure triggers like Fennessy’s are rare, they are not unheard of. According to Epilepsy Action, reflex epilepsies are where some, or all epileptic seizures are caused by a specific trigger. People suffering from music-induced seizures are triggered by a musical track, tune, or even a certain type of music. 

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