How does a person get epilepsy? A person with epilepsy will have recurrent seizures. Every function in the human body is triggered by messaging systems in our brain. Epilepsy results when this system is disrupted due to faulty electrical activity.
More What Is It? During a seizure, brain cells "fire" uncontrollably at up to four times their normal rate, temporarily affecting the way a person behaves, moves, thinks or feels. There are two major types of seizures: Primary generalized seizures — The seizure affects the entire cerebral cortex, the outer portion of the brain that contains the majority of brain cells.
In this type of seizure, the abnormal firing of brain cells occurs on both sides of the brain at about the same time. Partial focal seizure — The abnormal firing of brain cells begins in one region of the brain and remains in that one region.
Many conditions can affect the brain and trigger a seizure, including: A person may have only one seizure without a recurrence. Epilepsy is a condition in which seizures continue to recur. Symptoms Primary Generalized Seizures The different types of primary generalized seizures cause different symptoms: Generalized tonic-clonic seizure also called grand mal seizure — In this type of seizure, the person usually loses consciousness and falls to the ground.
All body muscles can contract at once in a sustained contraction, or they can contract in a series of shorter rhythmic contractions, or both. Some patients also lose bowel or bladder control.
The seizure episode typically lasts for less than a minute and is followed by period of lethargy sluggishness and temporary confusion. Often muscles are very sore after a generalized seizure. For a few seconds, the person may have a blank stare or rapid blinking.
This type of seizure usually begins in childhood or early adolescence. Status epilepticus — A state of a prolonged seizure 20 minutes or longer or a series of seizures without fully regaining consciousness.
This is a life-threatening medical emergency. Partial Focal Seizures The different types of partial seizures cause different symptoms: Simple partial seizure — In a simple partial seizure, the seizure-related electrical discharges remain localized so that the person experiences a feeling, sensation, movement or other symptom without losing consciousness.
During a simple partial seizure, the person remains awake and aware. Symptoms vary depending on the specific brain area involved and may include: Jerking movements in one part of the body An experience of abnormal smells or a distorted environment Unexplained fear or rage Complex partial seizure — This is the most common type of partial seizure.
In this type of seizure, the person loses awareness of his or her surroundings and is unresponsive or only partially responsive. There may be a blank stare, chewing or lip-smacking, or repetitive movements of the hands.Epilepsy is a nervous system condition.
It causes repeated, sudden, brief changes in the brain’s electrical activity. These changes cause various types of symptoms. Epileptic episodes are called seizures or convulsions. During a seizure, brain cells fire uncontrollably at up to four times their normal rate.
Seizure - an easy to understand guide covering causes, diagnosis, symptoms, treatment and prevention plus additional in depth medical information. Skip to Content.
Seizures are common. A person may have only one seizure without a recurrence. Epilepsy is a condition in which seizures continue to recur. WebMD explains the causes, symptoms, and treatment of refractory epilepsy, which develops when your seizures aren't brought under control by medicine.
These websites offer additional helpful information on epilepsy, its causes, treatment options, support and more (Note: these sites are not under the auspice of The American Association of Neurological Surgeons, and their listing here should not be seen as an endorsement of these sites or their content).
Epilepsy. Epilepsy is a seizure disorder that can interrupt your life. Understanding its causes, symptoms, and methods of treatment can allow you to take an active role in managing the condition. Epilepsy is a chronic disorder that causes unprovoked, recurrent seizures.
Learn more about epilepsy symptoms» Some treatment options include.