EPILEPSY

Epilepsy is a group of neurological diseases characterized by epileptic seizures. Epileptic seizures are episodes that can vary from brief and nearly undetectable to long periods of vigorous shaking. These episodes can result in physical injuries including occasionally broken bones.

Causes

Causes of epilepsy vary by age of the person. Some people with no clear cause of epilepsy may have a genetic cause. But what's true for every age is that the cause is unknown for about half of everyone with epilepsy.

 

Symptoms

Awareness, Sensory, Emotional or Thought Changes:

  • Déjà vu (a feeling of being there before but never have)

  • Jamais vu (a feeling that something is very familiar but it isn’t)

  • Smells

  • Sounds

  • Tastes

  • Visual loss or blurring

  • “Strange” feelings

  • Fear/panic (often negative or scary feelings)

  • Pleasant feelings

  • Racing thoughts

 

Risk factors

  • Babies who are born small for their age

  • Babies who have seizures in the first month of life

  • Babies who are born with abnormal areas in the brain

  • Bleeding into the brain

  • Abnormal blood vessels in the brain

  • Serious brain injury or lack of oxygen to the brain

  • Brain tumours

  • Infections of the brain: abscess, meningitis, or encephalitis

  • Stroke resulting from blockage of arteries

  • Cerebral palsy

Prevention

While many cases are not preventable, efforts to reduce head injuries, provide good care around the time of birth, and reduce environmental parasites such as the pork tapeworm may be effective.

 

Treatment

Epilepsy is usually treated with daily medication once a second seizure has occurred, but for those at high risk, medication may be started after the first seizure. Once epilepsy is diagnosed, it is important to begin treatment as soon as possible. For about 70 percent of those diagnosed with epilepsy, seizures can be controlled with modern medicines and surgical techniques.

 

Culled from Staywellworld blog post dated November 28, 2016.

To learn more, click on 

https://www.staywellworld.org/post/2016/11/28/knowing-about-epilepsy-and-seizures-part-1

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