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What are partial (focal) seizures?

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Partial (focal) seizures begin in a specific area of the brain. They may spread to the entire brain. There are two types:

  • If you have a focal onset aware seizure, you remain conscious. The seizure is very brief (usually less than two minutes). You may or may not be able to respond to people while it's happening.
  • Focal onset impaired awareness seizures can cause unconsciousness. You may also do things without knowing it, like lip smacking, chewing, moving your legs, or thrusting your pelvis.

From: What Are Seizures? What Causes Them? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES: 

American Academy of Neurology. 

Bazil, C. . Collins, 2002.  Living Well with Epilepsy and Other Seizure Disorders: An Expert explains What You Really Need to Know

Strafstrom, C. , November 2004.  Epilepsy Curriculum

Nadkarni, S. , June 2005.  Neurology

Bialer M. , September/October 2004. Epilepsy Research

Mayo Clinic: "Febrile seizure."

Epilepsy Foundation: "Focal Onset Aware Seizures (simple partial seizures), "Generalized Seizures," "Focal Onset Impaired Awareness Seizures (complex partial seizures)," "Infantile Spasms/West's Syndrome."

Reviewed by Neil Lava on March 06, 2019

SOURCES: 

American Academy of Neurology. 

Bazil, C. . Collins, 2002.  Living Well with Epilepsy and Other Seizure Disorders: An Expert explains What You Really Need to Know

Strafstrom, C. , November 2004.  Epilepsy Curriculum

Nadkarni, S. , June 2005.  Neurology

Bialer M. , September/October 2004. Epilepsy Research

Mayo Clinic: "Febrile seizure."

Epilepsy Foundation: "Focal Onset Aware Seizures (simple partial seizures), "Generalized Seizures," "Focal Onset Impaired Awareness Seizures (complex partial seizures)," "Infantile Spasms/West's Syndrome."

Reviewed by Neil Lava on March 06, 2019

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