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Neurology letter from Guyana
  1. Laura Mantoan Ritter1,2,
  2. Joanna Cole3
  1. 1Department of Neurosciences, King's College Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  2. 2Department of Neurology, St George's Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK
  3. 3Department of Internal Medicine, Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation, Georgetown, Guyana
  1. Correspondence to Dr Laura Mantoan Ritter, Department of Neurology, St George's Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Blackpool Road, London SW17 0QT, UK; l.mantoan{at}

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Nested between Venezuela in the west, Brazil in the south and Suriname in the east, Guyana lies on the northern Atlantic coast of the South American continent, just a few degrees above the equator line (figure 1). With a size of 214 970 km2 (comparable with the area of the UK) but a population of only about 735 554, it is one of the least densely populated countries in the world. Most of the population resides on the fertile coastal plains along Guyana's Atlantic shore, while 90% of the country is covered in lush and almost inaccessible tropical rainforest. While still part of the South American continent, Guyanese culture and economy is orientated towards the Caribbean, and with a population of East-Indian, African and Amerindian descent, Guyana is a vibrant melting pot for different cultures.

Figure 1

Geography of Guyana. (A) Geographical map of Guyana and (B) its location on the South American continent. (C) The national flag, (D) the national bird, the Hoatzin or Canje Pheasant, captured on camera during a boating trip along the Essequibo River. (E) The beautiful Rupununi Savannah located in the country’s southwest, bordering the Brazilian Amazon. Maps are under Gnu public licence. Figure 1A was modified from the original (Vardion, Image A, Wikipaedia) and is under Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication. Figure 1B was modified from the original (Urutseg, Wikipaedia) and is under Multi-license with GFDL and Creative Commons CC-BY-SA-2.5 and older versions (2.0 and 1.0).

At the end of a post-CCT (UK Certificate of Completion of Training) fellowship in epilepsy in October 2015, LMR was hosted by JC at the Department of Medicine, Georgetown Public Hospital, as part of the multidisciplinary Epilepsy Education Project invited by the Epilepsy Foundation for Guyana.

Approaching the capital Georgetown by air, the origin of the ancient Amerindian name …

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  • Contributors LMR and JC jointly wrote and revised the manuscript and prepared the figures.

  • Funding LMR and her team were supported by an ILAE Bursary and funding from the Epilepsy Foundation for Guyana.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed. This paper was reviewed by Martin Punter, Manchester, UK, and Colin Mumford, Edinburgh, UK.

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