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    Epilepsy Health Center

    Medical Reference Related to Epilepsy

    1. Questions About Medicines for Epilepsy - Topic Overview

      Adults with epilepsy may wonder if their children will also develop epilepsy. Whether a family history of epilepsy (genetics) increases a person's risk for the disorder partly depends on what type of epilepsy the family member has had.Several types of childhood epilepsy may be passed from parent to child. These include benign focal childhood epilepsy, childhood absence epilepsy, and juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, which have no other known cause.If you developed epilepsy as a result of a head injury, stroke, or other clear causes, you probably will not pass the condition on to any children you have. But certain genetic factors may have made you more likely to develop epilepsy after the injury, stroke, or other cause. And you might pass on these genetic factors to your child.A child of a parent with epilepsy may or may not develop the disorder. Family history is a risk factor, but many people with epilepsy have children who never develop it. Research on the role of genetics in epilepsy

    2. Special Diets for Epilepsy

      When the body burns (metabolizes) fat, it creates substances called ketones. The ketogenic diet tries to force the body to use more fat for energy instead of sugar (glucose) by increasing fat and restricting carbohydrates. It is not yet clear how or why the ketogenic diet prevents or reduces seizures, but it has been shown to be effective in reducing epileptic seizures in some children.1The ...

    3. Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy - Topic Overview

      Generalized tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizures are the easiest seizures to recognize. They happen most often in people with generalized epilepsy of unknown cause.A generalized tonic-clonic seizure begins with a sudden loss of consciousness. During the first 15 to 30 seconds of the seizure, the entire body stiffens as the muscles contract. The back and neck are arched. Sometimes the person may cry out as the vocal cords contract and air is released from the lungs. The person may turn blue because he or she isn't breathing. This is the tonic phase of the seizure.During the next 30 to 45 seconds, the muscles jerk (convulse) in a rhythmic pattern. This is the clonic phase of the seizure. While the muscles are jerking, the person may bite his or her tongue or lose bladder or bowel control.An entire seizure lasts 1 to 2 minutes. After the seizure, the person will be unresponsive at first but will gradually wake up in 10 to 30 minutes. The person may be sleepy, confused, or dazed. The person

    4. Questions About Medicines for Epilepsy - Topic Overview

      Anterior temporal lobectomy is the removal of part of one of the brain's temporal lobes. It is the most common type of surgery for epilepsy.Anterior temporal lobectomy is used to treat people with temporal lobe epilepsy, the most common type of epilepsy in adults, when antiepileptic medicines fail to control seizures. Temporal lobe epilepsy usually causes complex partial seizures that begin in the temporal lobe.For a person who has seizures that do not get better with antiepileptic medicines, anterior temporal lobectomy may be a good option. Having surgery may help control epilepsy better than if the person were to keep trying antiepileptic medicines.1

    5. Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy - Health Tools

      This health tool will help you make wise health decisions or take action regarding epilepsy.

    6. Epilepsy - Home Treatment

      Controlling seizures caused by epilepsy requires a daily commitment to following your treatment plan. If you are using antiepileptic medication, you must take your medication exactly as prescribed. Not following the treatment plan is one of the main reaso

    7. Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy - Topic Overview

      Myoclonic seizures affect a small number of children and adults with generalized epilepsy of unknown cause (idiopathic). In children and teens with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, the seizures seem to occur most often after waking up or while falling asleep.During a myoclonic seizure:The arms, legs, torso, or facial muscles jerk rapidly as though they are being shocked.The body may jerk once or many times, on one or both sides of the body, in a rhythmic or random pattern.The person usually does not lose consciousness.Myoclonic seizures are almost always very brief.

    8. Questions About Medicines for Epilepsy - Topic Overview

      If you have seizures that alter your awareness, consciousness, or muscle control, you may not have the legal right to drive.Laws vary from state to state, but in many cases you have to be seizure-free for at least 6 months to 1 year before you can get a driver's license.The laws of the state you live in, not your doctor, decide whether or not you have the right to drive. You can find out about the law in your state by visiting the Epilepsy Foundation website at www.epilepsyfoundation.org/resources/drivingandtravel.cfmBefore getting a license, you may have to show proof from your doctor that you are receiving treatment and that the treatment has brought your seizures under control. (Remember, too, that some drugs used to control epilepsy may make you drowsy. If you have just started a new drug, don't drive until you know how the drug will affect you.)In general, the risk of having a seizure-related traffic accident is greatly reduced in people who have been seizure-free for 1 year.

    9. On the Frontline of Epilepsy Treatment

      WebMD interviews Gregory L. Barkley, MD, former chairman of the Epilepsy Foundation's Professional Advisory Board, on the current state of epilepsy treatment.

    10. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

      Epilepsy information provided by the NINDS

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