Here's what a leading MD has to say.
There's so much speculation and controversy surrounding Jett Travolta's medical history and death. We asked Dr. Charles Sophy, Medical Director for the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services, to shed some light.
"I think it's eye-opening that someone with that severity of seizures is only on Depakote when there are so many more specific seizure medications that are used today, such as Tegretol or Neurotin -- which are the two biggest seizure drugs on the market and the first choices by doctors all over the nation," Dr. Sophy says. "It's hard to believe that a family like the Travoltas with the resources they have that they would use Depakote to treat Jett's seizures."
"Interestingly enough, Depakote is often not even used as a seizure drug anymore," Dr. Sophy continues. "What we do know is the Travoltas are Scientologists and that means they don't believe in psychiatry, so maybe their doctor prescribed Depakote to both stabilize Jett's mood and to treat the seizure disorder as well. We will never know if Jett was on Depakote for a seizure disorder or a mood disorder such as bipolar disorder."
"Knowing there were two 'mannies' and a baby monitor signifies the severity of the situation -- it could have been autism, a mood disorder or seizure disorder, but no one can diagnose that for sure without seeing all of Jett's medical records or examining the body," Dr. Sophy explains. "They cremated him immediately, so we won't ever have these answers."
What's ultimately most important, particularly for parents, to take from this tragedy, says Sophy, is not the way Jett died, but the way he lived, surrounded and completely wrapped in the unconditional love of his parents, John and Kelly. "There is no medicine or doctor or therapy that can take the place of that," he says. "And as a medical professional, I can say without reservation that there is no diagnosis, especially now, that matters or would have mattered to Jett more than what he had -- the true love and care of his parents. So the message for all parents here is to love your child, be there for your child, and commit to them and their life 100%."
Our thoughts continue to be with the family in this difficult time.