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Epilepsy Health Center

Medical Reference Related to Epilepsy

  1. Understanding Temporal Lobe Seizure -- Symptoms

    Temporal lobe or psychomotor seizures are caused by abnormal electrical activity in one area of the brain. Learn about the symptoms.

  2. Understanding Temporal Lobe Seizure -- Diagnosis and Treatment

    WebMD's guide to the diagnosis and treatment of temporal lobe seizures.

  3. Epilepsy - Cause

    Learn about causes of epilepsy, including tumor, infection, or damage to the brain.

  4. Epilepsy: Complex Partial Seizures - Topic Overview

    Complex partial seizures occur in children and adults with certain forms of epilepsy. They are the most common type of seizure in adults.An aura may occur at the beginning of a seizure. It may consist of a strange smell, taste, sound, or visual disturbance, an unexplained feeling of fear or anxiety, or a sense that everything seems strangely familiar, like it has all happened before (déjà vu), or strangely unfamiliar (jamais vu).The seizure changes the person's level of consciousness. The person may appear awake but cannot respond to anything or anyone around him or her. The person usually stares into space.The seizure may include involuntary movements called automatisms, such as lip-smacking, chewing, hand wringing, picking, and swallowing.The seizure lasts 30 seconds to 2 minutes.Most people who have complex partial seizures do not remember having them. After a seizure, the person will be confused or disoriented and may have a hard time speaking and swallowing for several

  5. Epilepsy - Health Tools

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

  6. Helping a Person During a Seizure - Topic Overview

    An epileptic seizure or convulsion can be terrifying. A seizure temporarily interferes with muscle control, movement, speech, vision, or awareness. It may cause a person's entire body to shake violently for a few seconds to a few minutes, and he or she may lose consciousness.Seizures can be mild to severe, and they affect people differently. Even though you may feel helpless around someone having

  7. Epilepsy and Driving - 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.

  8. Hemispherectomy for Epilepsy - Topic Overview

    The left and right sides of the brain are called hemispheres. Hemispherectomy is the removal of one side of the brain. This procedure is sometimes done on children who have severe forms of epilepsy, such as Rasmussen syndrome and Sturge-Weber disease. These conditions badly damage one side of the brain, cause frequent seizures and problems with physical and mental development. And these conditions do not respond well to drug treatment.Hemispherectomy may completely prevent seizures and reverse delays in development that occur with some forms of epilepsy.The surgery always causes some loss of movement and sensation on one side of the body and sometimes causes partial loss of vision in half of the visual field of each eye. But most children with a large epileptic area on one side of the brain already have these problems before the surgery.

  9. Imaging Tests for Epilepsy - Topic Overview

    Imaging tests, such as MRI or CT scan, are often done after a first seizure. And they are recommended in other situations. An MRI or CT scan may be done immediately if you had a seizure along with confusion or new motor or sensory problems that did not improve soon after the seizure ended. Ongoing headache or fever, AIDS, recent head trauma, cancer, or anticoagulant therapy also increases the likelihood that the seizure was related to a serious brain problem. The nature of the seizure and your age can also help determine whether an imaging test is needed.Imaging tests may be used before epilepsy surgery to find the exact location of a problem in the brain. Because scans are able to detect brain lesions, they can also be helpful in deciding whether it is safe to stop treatment with medicine. The presence of lesions increases your risk of having seizures if you stop taking medicine.

  10. Epilepsy: Atonic Seizures - Topic Overview

    An atonic seizure is a sudden loss of muscle tone in the muscles that hold the body and head upright.The seizure occurs without warning and usually causes the person to fall down.Some atonic seizures may be more limited, only causing the person's head to drop for a moment.Atonic seizures are fairly uncommon and occur mostly in people with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. This is a severe form of generalized epilepsy that begins in early childhood. (Children with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome may also have tonic seizures.)People who have atonic or tonic seizures are likely to be injured when they fall. Children may have to wear helmets and restrict their activities to prevent serious injury.

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