Skip to content

Epilepsy Health Center

Font Size

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.

Recommended Related to Epilepsy

What Is Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy?

Juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, or JME, is a form of epilepsy that starts in childhood or adolescence. People with this disorder experience muscle twitching or jerking. They may also have other seizure types, including full-blown convulsive seizures or absence seizures (staring spells). Juvenile myoclonic epilepsy is among the most common forms of epilepsy. One of every 14 people with epilepsy has juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. Treatment with an epilepsy drug that works for multiple seizure types...

Read the What Is Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy? article > >

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.

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: March 12, 2014
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
    Next Article:

    Imaging Tests for Epilepsy Topics

    Today on WebMD

    human head and brain waves
    Causes, symptoms, and treatments.
    Grand mal seizure
    How is each one different?
    marijuana plant
    CBD, a plant chemical, may cut down seizures.
    prescription bottle
    Which medication is right for you?
    Seizures Driving
    Questions for Doctor Epilepsy
    Graces Magic Diet
    Pills spilling from bottle in front of clock
    first aid kit
    Caring Child Epilepsy
    Making Home Safe
    epilepsy monitoring

    WebMD Special Sections