The trouble with seizures
Initially I was not that superstitious an a believer of supernatural phenomena. I used to be this kind of person who believed in the modern worldly life where everything is controlled by science. This was until I started having a firsthand experience of what a seizure was all about. That is when I started believing in the power of curses and other sources of unknown power. I was very sure that I was cursed or someone had thrown a spell on me. The belief of curse superseded any other thing because I had never had of any witches around my hometown.
This curse thing was strengthened by the stories that I used to hear from one of the religious books. That it goes up to the fourth generation. Maybe my great grandfather did something wrong and was cursed and am the fourth generation of the curse thing. If am the fourth generation, that means that am the last one on my lineage to ever experience it ever experience it hence my kids (if I will ever live to have them) will not experience this tormenting demon called a seizure.
I used to hear about a seizure but I never gave a thought of it. I used to know that it was a celebrity disease since one time when I heard it was about a certain rapper who had a seizure while on stage performing. Why should I give a damn about it yet it is a form of punishment to those who take drugs as their daily meal?
My first encounter with seizure was when I was in college. I had gathered my classmates before a computer screen and we were analyzing some piece of code for a computer program that I had just written. All of a sudden I started having some abnormal experience that I have never had before. My heart started beating faster than its normal rate. When I tried changing the position of my fingers, I could not feel them it was like my left half was paralyzed.
I gazed at the screen of the computer with my eyes wide open as if I was demanding answers from it as to why my body was behaving that way. Fear struck me and I started screaming and shouting. I could hear my classmates rebuking me of being silly as others were saying that I was celebrating because of the code that I had written (keeping mind that it was a “hello World” code). I started hearing nothing then and everything around the room became dark. The last thing I remember was falling on some heavy furniture behind me.
Some hours later at the hospital bed I heard the doctor sealing my fate. I was found to have a seizure. I tried to lift my body from the bed to protest but the pain from my back could not allow me to do so. I believe I got the pain from the fall I had in the computer lab. The bench was made of a strong hardwood and there was no way I could go scot-free after falling on it. Not even the toughest wrestler from whichever height of the ladder.
I was diagnosed with some medications which I believed was just one way of consoling me. They never did anything significant as two weeks later I had another seizure. The frequency in which they occurred increased and after attending some therapy sessions, I had to adopt to living with this condition.
The signs and symptoms that I was experiencing each time I had a seizure attack were varying and I found it difficult to bear with. I would sometimes feel dizzy and my head becoming lighter. I would feel like am losing my head. Then I would start feeling that I have been to some imaginary environment which will suddenly throw my whole body into confusion. My ears will start hearing piercing sound and my teeth would feel like they are being grinded on some tarmac. I will start seeing blurred images and my final state will be falling on any nearby ground. I could not bear seeing my mother sitting beside me shedding tears every time I gained consciousness.
I remember there was I time I was in a social setting and spotted a cute lady. Without hesitating, I approached her. After we had built a good rapport, a seizure attacked me from unexpected angle. I stared at the lady with my eyes wide open and started gnashing my teeth against each other. She ran away screaming at the top of her voice. I later imagined that she thought I was a zombie preparing to devour her.
I have adopted my life to live with this condition and of late am just leading a smooth life.
This website is being restored, but not like the old way. New content on Epilepsy written by an experienced physician (me).
The history of this website
From 2001 to 2010, this was the website for the EYiE project, for epilepsy and its effects on the lives of young people.
Young people with epilepsy have to live in a world where epilepsy is often misunderstood. The EYiE project provides an opportunity for young people to discuss epilepsy and its effects on their lives. This is done via the Internet through ‘web’ pages produced by young people from many different countries. This web site presents the pages that have been produced by young people in 26 countries.
The web pages can be submitted by any young person with epilepsy.
The project also provides a regular training course in HTML where young people with epilepsy can meet and create the web pages together. An HTML training manual is provided in English and Spanish on this site. See a description of the latest course below (EYiE2).
Over the years 2002 to 2004 they held conferences sponsored by some agency of the EU. For example, the “EYiEs Wide Open” conference:
EYiEs Wide Open was the name of the second EYiE project which took place in 2001 and had as an activity a 6 day activity in Germany, August 2001. EYiEs Wide Open was born out of the success of the first EYiE project in Athens, 2000 and had as its aim to widen the EYiE network and appeal to more young people with epilepsy.
Twenty seven people participated from sixteen European countries. Four of these countries had not previously participated – Estonia, Poland, Yugoslavia and Malta. In total 26 countries have contributed to the EYiE project and the web site over the past two years.
The EYiE project are partly funded by the Youth Programme of the European and partly by the IBE and the Chapters and Friends. The people who participate should be between 15 and 25 years and be members of one of the IBE Chapter organizations. The Chapters usually pay the participants travel expenses to attend the course and the project then covers all other expenses that is to say the accommodation, food, social activities, training facilities and trainer’s fees are then provided by the project.
What happens on an EYiE course?
Our main activity has been to develop internet web pages about epilepsy in the language of each of the project partners. As some people have not had experience of working with web pages before we provide an intensive training course taught by an experienced IT trainer. At the end of the course the participants will know enough to be able to write their own web pages and maintain the ones they developed during the course. All the participants have free access to the pages on our Server and they can change them or update them as and when they want.
Later in it’s history, in 2010 this website had information on: Acoustics, Air Conditioning, Attorneys, Business, Carpet, Data Recovery, Defensive Driving, Displays, Dogs, Electric Fireplaces, Flooring, Glasses, HR Software, Leather, Life Insurance, Lingerie, Lottery, Memory Foam, Online Programs, Paper, Party Supplies, Private Investigator, Real Estate, Scales, Shoe Repair, Solar Electricity
The domain was parked in 2011 to 2014, and sold at auction in 2015. Now a new owner (me) is in the early stages of bringing it back to life. Not sure of the focus yet, but medical-related epilepsy related most likely. The backlinks are all from epilepsy organizations, so I should endeavor to do a good job and create something useful. That’s what I went ahead and did.
Below are some posts that I’ve published which contain more information about epilepsy. Go ahead and read by clicking through the various topics below. I will be constantly updating the site with fresh content so don’t fail to bookmark or visit the site in future.
What a shame, because I’ve done plenty of CT and MRI scanning over the years of people with seizure disorders, and I know lots of people who take anticonvulsant medications, as well as choosing a healthy diet and exercise. I could contribute a little old-fart doctor experience, but I just don’t have time right now. I guess I’ll just keep this site going, in hopes that I get more time to improve it in the future.
What is Epilepsy?
Epilepsy is a neurological problem which is usually characterized by uncontrolled seizures which occur in the brain.
The seizures are not usually caused by other factors such as alcohol or other health condition but are triggered by the brain. If a person has two or more seizures then the person can be diagnosed with epilepsy. The types of seizures may vary from one person to the other and a person with epilepsy can as well as more than one type of seizures. Moreover, a person suffering from epilepsy may be able to be suffering from other neurological disorders.
How the Human Brain Works
The human brain is the central processor of the human body. It possesses a network of nerves (neurons and nerve fibers) which are responsible for communication with other nerves in the body. In this way, the brain is able to control all the senses and functions of a person’s body. That means that a person is able to feel pain, sadness, happiness as well as hear, respond to sound etc.
Normally, the brain works by regularly sending electrical impulses through the network of nerves from the brain to other parts and organs of the body. This is possible via some chemical messengers called neurotransmitters. This way, the brain is able to control all the functions of the brain. For optimal performance of all body processes, these electrical impulses must be excited enough and be transmitted without any failure. In case of any abnormality in the balance of electrical charges in the brain, a seizure may occur.
What is a Seizure?
A seizure is an abnormality of the human body which occurs when electrical balance in the brain is lost resulting to either incorrect discharge of electrical impulses when they shouldn’t be discharge or failure for electrical impulses in the body being discharged when they are not supposed to be discharged. This abnormality of electrical discharge causes seizures which are physical effects that the body experiences due to abnormality of brain electrical impulses such as a sudden surge of discharge of electrical impulses when not required.
When a seizures occurs the electrical signals discharged from the brain may travel to any part of the body through the nerves and then affect the part that they travel to, for instance, if they travel to the sight sensory the person affected may just keep staring during the seizures because the brain fails to understand what it sees. If they travel to the muscles of the legs that support mobility of a person, the person may fall down during the seizure.
The Impacts in the Society
Created By Epilepsy
Due to the disease’s inconsistent nature of occurrence, epilepsy causes different effects on each patient. These can be quite inconsequential or extremely serious.
Many epileptic seizures are mishandled or unrecognized largely due to public ignorance regarding the disease. The disease is not widely discussed in the public forum and the general public opinion on the disease is undermined by fear and misconceptions. Consequently, these factors have promoted prejudice, misunderstandings, and stigma regarding the disease and its patients.
Impact on social relations
The randomness with which seizures occur is one of the major factors that undermine patients’ social relations. Additionally, patients may suffer from discrimination, rejection and/or unnecessary restrictions leading to isolation and poor social relations. Epilepsy can negatively affect a patient’s social and sex life. Active epilepsy may inhibit physical activities such as driving undermining the patient’s independence and social activities.
Impact on employment
Employers harbor misconceptions regarding epilepsy and patients may find it difficult to secure and retain a job. Disclosure of the disease to employers can lead to poor employment opportunities. Patients should seek the help of relevant bodies and study relevant government regulations on the protection of their rights with regard to employment.
The psychological effects of epilepsy vary from one patient to another. Many patients feel out of control and are hounded by uncertainty. Due to the stigma associated with the disease, many patients prefer to keep their condition secret. Mainly, public reaction to a patient and perceived perception of the patient to the public are the main causes of psychological problems.
In addition to harboring feelings of frustration, anger, and vulnerability, patients may suffer from low self-esteem and self-confidence. Finally, anxiety and depression may creep in as the patient feels embarrassed due to their condition.
Effects on the family and friends
Friends and family react and treat an epileptic in various ways. After the initial diagnosis, they may experience fear, grief, anger, and frustration among other feelings. They are likely to experience problems with the randomness of occurrence of seizures and they may suffer from the prejudice directed towards the disease. Some of them may become overprotective and/or restrictive, thereby undermining the patient’s social relations and also dependent and vulnerable.
Patients’ involved in relationships may experience insensitivity and misunderstandings from their spouses. All the parties involved should seek the help, of professional counselors.
Coping with epilepsy as a patient
Diagnosis and support usually enhance seizure management, emotional coping, and personal advocacy. Support groups, epileptic organisations, counselors, and informative courses regarding the disease may also enhance coping. Patients should accept and play an active role in the management of their condition to enhance coping.
Managing epileptic seizures as a patient
As mentioned above, patients should play an active role in the management of their condition. This involves adopting a positive attitude towards the condition, studying patterns of seizure occurrence and embracing interventions to control and manage seizures. Seizure occurrence is affected by the patient’s emotions and feelings and hence emotional coping and management should alleviate the problem. Discussing the condition with others, especially counselors and support groups, can relieve stress and improve ones safety.
Patients should consider stress management techniques such as yoga, sleep sufficiency, regular exercise, and good nutrition. Additionally, patients should strive to enhance overall health by avoiding doing illegal drugs and alcohol and taking medication as prescribed. Patients should collaborate with their doctors to study seizure triggers and occurrence patterns in a bid to create a seizure management plan.
Relationship with the doctor
In order to enjoy quality medical care, patients and/or their families should maintain a healthy and productive relationship with their doctors. They should work as partners in alleviating the problems associated with the condition. Patients should seek and share all relevant information regarding the condition from their doctors.
They should also share all their physical, social and psychological problems with their doctors and discuss effective interventions to ease the impacts of the condition on the patient’s body and life.
First Aid Procedure for Generalized Convulsive Seizures
- Lay the patient on their side: This should be the first step to clear the patient’s airway and to allow saliva and other fluids to drain.
- Simmer down: Remain calm and do not interrupt the seizure or try to revive the patient. You should also time the seizure and remain calm even if the patient appears not to breathe at first.
- Ensure patient safety: Ensure that the patient does not suffer any other injuries by moving any injurious objects. Without interfering with the seizure, loosen the patient’s clothes and support their head with something soft.
- Safeguard the patient’s mouth: Avoid inserting objects into the patient’s mouth to avoid teeth and jaw injury because contrary to popular belief, the patient cannot swallow their tongue.
- Comfort after recovery: reassure, comfort, and stay with the patient until they regain full awareness.
- Call for medical help: This should be done if the seizure exceeds 5 minutes, repeats, or the patient fails to recover, which is a rare occurrence.
First aid procedure for Partial Non-Convulsive Seizures
The following steps should be undertaken to help a person having a complex partial seizure:
- Stay calm and stay with the patient: Do not interrupt the seizure and do not panic even if the patient loses awareness.
- Ensure patient safety: Move injurious objects away from the patients.
- Observe seizure effects: Note the physical effects of the seizure on the patient such as movements and behavior.
- Expect convulsive seizures: partial seizures can occur as an aura or as a warning that a convulsive seizure will follow. Remain calm if a convulsive seizure occurs after the partial non-convulsive seizure spreads throughout the patient’s brain.
- Comfort after recovery: Stay with the patient and offer reassurance and be comforting until they are fully recovered.
Types of Epilepsy
Due to the many different types of seizure disorders and syndromes in the International Classification, the medically proper term for epilepsy is “the epilepsies”. Epilepsy is classified into two main categories; ‘generalized’ and ‘partial seizures’, with a symmetrical occurrence of the two seizures in patients under the age of 40.
They start in a particular part in the brain, which is referred to as the ‘seizure focus’ and end up affecting only that section of the brain. Partial seizures can alter the patient’s consciousness or awareness depending on the point of occurrence in the brain and subsequent part of infection in the brain.
Simple Partial Seizures
They are partial seizures that do not alter the patient’s consciousness and they occur in only a small part of the brain. These seizures last only a short time and the person is aware of what is happening. A simple partial seizure is also called an “aura” because it indicates that a bigger seizure will occur. They are characterized by an unusual emotion, sensation, or movement and they vary depending on the location of the seizure focus in the patient’s brain.
Complex Partial Seizures
They alter the patient’s awareness because they start and affect central structures in the brain, which control consciousness. Due to their occurrence in the brain’s temporal or frontal lobes, they are also called psychomotor or ‘temporal lobe’ seizures and they affect complex brain functions in these parts. They usually occur as either simple partial seizures before spreading to other parts of the brain or they may suddenly alter the patient’s consciousness.
After losing awareness, the patient may exhibit unusual symptoms such as staring blankly and unconsciously performing automatic repeated movements called automatism, like lip smacking or wandering aimlessly. They also affect the patient’s speech, comprehension, and response. Although they are very common seizures in epileptic patients, they are not widely recognized and are usually confused for drunkenness.
Unlike the partial seizures, generalized seizures do not have a focal starting place in the brain but occur after abnormal excessive electricity floods the entire brain instantly and unexpectedly. They can be either convulsive or non-convulsive and they alter the patient’s consciousness.
Generalized Tonic Clonic or
Grand Mal Seizures
These are generalized convulsive seizures that are caused by the firing of all the nerve cells in the brain simultaneously causing the patient to lose consciousness. These convulsive seizures were originally called grand mal but their proper medical term is tonic clonic. The term tonic clonic was created from two words, tonic-stiffening and clonic-jerking. They are mostly recognized as epilepsy and they cause unconsciousness throughout a seizure.
They start with the tonic phase which involves the stiffening of the body muscles casing the patient to collapse to the ground. Patient’s also cry out as air strains to leave tyheir bodies and breathing is inhibited as chest muscles stiffen too. Other symptoms include; back arches, eye rolling, bluish skin, and extended limbs. After the tonic phase, the clonic phase follows, which is characterised by rhythmic jerking of the whole body for about 1-3 minutes.
Patient’s may bite their tongue, lose bowel and bladder control. The jerking usually slows after 3 minutes and the seizure ends and the patient sighs as they regain normal breathing. Following the tonic clonic seizure, patients are left limp, drowsy, and confused, due to their brain’s reaction to the abnormal misfiring during the seizure.
Absence or Petit Mal Seizures
These are generalized seizures that mostly occur in children causing them to lose awareness and become unresponsive for a few seconds. They are caused by a characteristic electrical charge being produced by the child’s brain and they usually disappear after the age of 18. Usually mistaken as daydreaming, absence seizures cause very brief and abrupt staring spells for less than ten seconds, during which time the child appears blank.
They can also cause hand, mouth and head movement, especially if they exceed ten seconds. The child usually recovers fully, regaining normal alertness without any knowledge that they have experienced a seizure.
Atypical Absence Seizures
They are similar to typical absence seizures but characterised by pronounced jerking and last longer than 20 seconds. They do not cause complete loss of awareness and they are common in children who suffer from development delays. They are associated with other types of seizures and/or damage to the patient’s nervous system.
The term myoclonic consists of; myo-muscle and clonic-jerk. These seizures are caused by an abnormal electrical discharge in the muscle control part of the brain resulting in sudden jerking of arms, legs, and patient’s trunk. They can cause the patient to collapse and they occur in various epileptic syndromes such as the juvenile myoclonic epilepsy syndrome. Some myclonic jerks originate from the spinal cord and are not classified as seizures.
The term atonic comes from; a-non and tonic-stiff. This refers to a situation where the patient suffers a seizure in the section of the brain responsible for muscle tone making their limbs to suddenly go limp. Although they last for just a few seconds, they are very dangerous because they cause patients to suddenly collapse to the ground.
Secondarily Generalized Seizures
They start in the brain as simple or complex partial seizures and then spread throughout the brain resulting in a generalized clonic tonic and hence causing the patient to lose consciousness. Unlike primarily generalized seizures, they have a focal (starting) point that is simultaneous throughout the brain.
Epilepsy syndromes refer to a seizure disorder that is defined by a characteristic cluster of features, signs, or symptoms. The most common epileptic syndromes include; febrile seizures, infantile spasms, Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, Benign Rolandic epilepsy, juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, progressive myoclonic epilepsy, reflex epilepsies, temporal lobe epilepsy, and frontal lobe epilepsy.
This refers to a situation where a seizure lasts more than 30 minutes or occurs repeatedly. Although this state occurs rarely, it can happen to any type of seizure and it is considered a medical emergency.
Diagnosis of Epilepsy through Test
There are several tests which can be used to detect any abnormal activities of electrical charges in the brain and hence conclude if or not a person may be suffering from epilepsy.
Therefore if you experience more than one seizure it is always paramount that you see a specialist who will diagnose if or not you are epileptic.
Who is the best Doctor to see?
Since seizures can be triggered by other factors such as low sugar level in the body or excessive use of alcohol or drugs or can be triggered by other factors such as stress, you need to see a doctor who can make the correct diagnosis.
A visit to a health care center is critical so that primary test to determine if you are epileptic can be conducted, but in other instances especially if you have had more than one seizure attack, it is vital for one to visit a neurologist.
A neurologist is specifically trained to deal with disorders which affect the nervous system and therefore they are critical in the treatment of epilepsy.
However, there are neurologists who are specifically trained to deal with epilepsy cases. They are called epileptologists. These specialists can be of great help to people with constant seizures especially pregnant women.
Medical Tests for Epilepsy
- Electroencephalogram (EEG)
An Electroencephalogram (EEG) can be used to detect and measure abnormal electrical activities that occur in the brain and cause epilepsy. However, this method may not be foolproof because abnormal brain activities may occur only during seizures and cease when seizures cease hence during a test the brain of an epileptic person may be performing normally and hence epileptic diagnosis may fail.
During an EEG test electrodes are placed on the scalp of your head through electrode and then the electrical impulses in the brain are able to be detected.
To enable the tests to be certain, you may be requested to look straight into a flashlight (a common trigger of seizures) or asked to deeply breathe in. In some instances, EEG may be recorded while you are asleep or you might be given a small portable EEG recording device (ambulatory EEG) which you can use to measure and monitor the activities of your brain. Ambulatory EEGs are usually given when the activities of the brain happen to deep into the brain that they can’t be detected using the scalp electrodes hence their need.
Since EEG may fail to pick up brain abnormalities other further test may be recommended. They include:
- Magnetic Resonance Imager (MRI)
All electric currents are able to develop magnetic fields and hence the needs for a MRI test. This test measures the strength of the magnetic activity of the brain hence is able to detect and diagnose if a person is suffering from epilepsy.
A MRI scan is not only capable of detecting the magnetic fields that the brain experiences but is also able to detect the possible causes of structural damage(s) of the brain which result to abnormal impulses by detailing all this through images scanned which includes the possibilities of brain tumor.
- CT scans
They are also known as CAT scan i.e. computerized axial tomography which is a type of test that combines the use of computer technology with x-rays to produce a 3D image of the brain which can then be studied for any abnormality in the flow of electric impulses.
- Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
This like the MRI is better developed to provide more information about the basic functioning of the brain as well as the biochemistry processes of the brain hence when used in conjunction with CT scans or MRI can be able to provide additional information which could have been missed.
Nevertheless, as much as the above test could seem as primary test for proper diagnosis of epilepsy, there are other supportive tests which are also vital especially in detecting some hidden epileptic conditions. They include;
- Functional MRI (fMRI)
This is used to look at some remote areas of the brain for any abnormal brain activity.
- Positron Emission Tomography (PET)
PET is able to detect cerebral blood flow and metabolism of the brain. This one is usually highly specialized and much expensive.
SPECT is also used to detect celebral blood flow of the brain.
When can it be Concluded That A patient has Epilepsy?
Correct diagnosis for epilepsy can be a tough task. It is not easy to diagnose epilepsy because of the different factors that can result to seizures. Usually, if you have had more than two seizures, it is recommended that you see a specialist, in this case a neurologist so that more information about the symptoms of the seizures may be collected so that you can be properly diagnosed if you have epilepsy.
The most basic information which can help in the diagnosis of epilepsy is your personal history/ family history though other information such as the feeling and behavior before and after the seizure occurred is also vital in diagnosing if you have epilepsy. Some seizures could have been predisposed by your lifestyle such as excessive alcohol intake or stress and do not necessarily mean that you are epileptic.
Diagnosis before Seizure
Before any seizure happens, there are some signs that you may feel or experience. However, for epileptic people, these signs may be hard for them to realize because the seizures happen all over a sudden with no warning. Some of the signs that a specialist would look for to make proper diagnosis include;
- Seizure triggers. A specialist may ask you if there were any specific triggers which would have made you experience the seizures. These may include the feeling of tiredness, craving for something, feeling unwell etc.
- Activities that you were involved in. Before the seizure happened the activities that you were involved in could have triggered the seizures. What and where were you when the seizures occurred.
- Unusual sensory sensations. There could be some sensation that triggered off the seizures such as foul smell. Taste or an ugly scene that you experienced.
- Mood changes. At times before a seizure occurs your mood might changes. You could experience some excitement, sadness, anxiety etc.
- Warning signs. There could be some warning signs that you experience before you have a seizures. This is noted if you have experience more than one seizure, hence these signs are critical for proper epilepsy diagnosis.
Diagnosis during Seizures
When you experience a seizure, there are usually those physical signs which can be noted especially by those who come to you aid. These signs are critical for proper diagnosis. They include;
- Passing out or becoming confused when the seizure happens.
- Pulse rate – did you experience heavy breathing or shortness of breath?
- Movements of body part and which ones.
- Being still but with eyes wide open yet gazing at nothing (not being able to detect anything in the vicinity).
- Color changes of the skin such as becoming pale or flushed.
- Unusual sounds made during the seizure such as mumbling.
- Excessive sweating
- Biting you tongue or cheek
Diagnosis after Seizures
- Body feeling after seizures such as feeling worn out or hungry or thirsty.
- Duration that the seizures lasted.
- What you noticed first after the seizure occurred.
After diagnosis before, during and after the seizure, more information is needed to determine if you may be suffering from epilepsy. This may include family history as well as medical history. In the case of medical history, the medication that you are using or the condition which befell you is paramount in detecting if you are epileptic. For instance, if you had meningitis prior to you seizures, there is likelihood that you are epileptic. Also injuries such as accidents could too cause epilepsy.
Moreover, the family history of a person is critical in determining if epilepsy has been passed to one down a family line. Above all, if you experience more than one seizure, it is highly recommended that you seek immediate medical attention to determine if or not you are epileptic.
Causes of Epilepsy
Are There specific cause of epilepsy?
There are numerous causes which can yield to epilepsy, though there might be no specific cause which can be attributed to epilepsy in a given individual. Epilepsy can be cause by a combination of factors which contributes to an abnormality in the brain hence predisposing an individual to epilepsy. Thus determining a specific cause of epilepsy in a person may be a difficult task.
Theirs is usually a level of stimulation in the brain which may trigger one to have a seizure. But that does not necessarily mean that one is epileptic. This is usually called seizure threshold and some people may be born with a lower threshold than normal (may be genetically passed along family lines) hence such a person can easily have a seizure easily than people with higher seizure threshold, who may required a higher amount of stimulation in the brain to have a seizures.
Hence, epilepsy is categorized into two classes;
Idiopathic epilepsy – this is a type of epilepsy where no specific cause can be attributed to the epilepsy i.e. there are no factors which can be found to cause the seizures. Thus Idiopathic epilepsy is said to be passed down the family line through genes.
Symptomatic epilepsy – this is a type of epilepsy where there are specific cause which can be attributed to the epilepsy.
Causes of symptomatic epilepsy
- Head injuries such as those caused by accidents.
- Brain tumors
- Birth trauma such as any which may occur during birth e.g. lack of enough oxygen.
- Attack by diseases which affect the operations of the brain such as stroke.
- Pre-natal brain injury which might occur during the development of the fetus.
- Substance abuse such as misuse of alcohol or drugs.
- Outcome of infectious diseases such as meningitis
People suffering from epilepsy may experiences seizures as a result of various triggers. The most common triggers of these seizures include;
- Excessive alcohol or drugs intake.
- Deprivation of sleep.
- Use of certain medication or in some cases prolonged use of certain medication.
- Monthly periods in women.