The Epilepsy Terms You Should Know

Getting diagnosed with a lifelong disease and managing symptoms can be taxing all on its own without having to learn new terminology. Nonetheless, the only way to truly understand a condition is to familiarize yourself with the essential epilepsy terms.

In the case of epilepsy, which is a neurological condition that causes seizures, there are many terms that you should know as well to understand the condition better. With that in mind, here are 9 important epilepsy terms that you must become familiar with if you or someone you know has epilepsy.

A Neurologist — Doctors who specialize in treating epilepsy are called neurologists, which is a term used to refer to a doctor who specializes in brain disorders. In cases where medications prove to be ineffective, people may consult a neurologist whose specialty is epilepsy, who is referred to as an epileptologist.

A Seizure A seizure refers to an abrupt surge of irregular electrical impulses in the brain due to chemical changes. There are a number of different types of seizures all originating in different sites of the brain. Most seizures last seconds to a couple of minutes, and seizures that last longer require medical attention as they can be life-threatening.

EEG — Electroencephalography is a painless, risk-free test that is commonly used to assess electrical activity in the brain. EEGs provide doctors with data for them to detect whether there is any irregular electrical activity in the brain.

Partial Epilepsy Affecting up to 60% of all cases, partial epilepsy is the most common type, typically only impacting the temporal lobe. The seizures that partial epilepsy causes typically do not lead to unconsciousness.

Generalized Epilepsy — It is generalized epilepsy when the entire brain is affected by a seizure, meaning unlike partial epilepsy, generalized epilepsy seizures lead to a loss of consciousness and involuntary body movements.

A Simple Seizure — A simple seizure means that the person experiencing the seizure does not lose their consciousness and often cannot even tell that they are seizing. as they are not overtly detectable.

A Complex Seizure — Unlike a simple seizure, a complex seizure causes a loss of consciousness with the patient often appearing to stare blankly into space.

A Tonic Seizure — A tonic seizure affects the muscles and causes stiffness, typically during sleep.

A Clonic Seizure — A clonic seizure is characterized by the parts of the or entire body rhythmically and repeatedly jerking. Restraining the individual is not an effective way to stop the seizure, and the person should be allowed enough space so as to avoid injuries.

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