What are Seizures?

Seizures are caused by abnormal brain activity which can affect communication between neurons. This can effect focal area of the brain, or the entire brain.  Depending on the location, this may lead to symptoms such as loss of consciousness, jerking body movements or visual disturbances.  Some patients may experience signs or sensations hours or days before a seizure takes place. When there are two or more unprovoked  seizures, this is called Epilepsy.

Diagnosis and Treatment:

One of the most common tools used in helping diagnose seizures is the electroencephalogram (EEG).  By placing the  electrodes on the patients scalp, the EEG records brain activity and can show if there is any abnormal brain wave patterns.  Even if the patient is not having a seizure while an EEG is being performed, changes to normal brain wave patterns may still be evident.  In addition to EEG, CT, MRI and PET scan are available to further evaluate the cause of the seizures.

There are several treatment options for patients with epilepsy, depending on the cause and type of seizure. There are tailored diets such as the Ketogenic diet which can help control recurrent seizures.  There are several medications as well which can stop and control most  seizures.

Specific Seizure Disorders:

• Absence seizures
• Convulsive seizures
• Atonic Seizures
• Clonic Seizures
• Tonic Seizures
• Myclonic Seizures

Signs and Symptoms of Seizure Disorders:

• Loss of conciousness
• Temporary confusion
• Uncontrollable muscle movements
• Clenching of teeth
• Biting of tongue
• Loss of balance

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