Epilepsy

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Epilepsy Guide

Alison Beaver

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Epilepsy Definition

Definition

Brain cells send messages to the body through electrical signals. A seizure happens when there are abnormal electrical signals in the brain. During a seizure, you may:

  • Lose consciousness
  • Stare into space
  • Have convulsions (abnormal jerking of the muscles)
  • Experience abnormalities of sensation or emotion

When two or more seizures occur it is considered a seizure disorder. This condition is also known as epilepsy.

Seizure disorders may be classified by the part of the brain they affect and the kinds of symptoms they cause. The main categories are:

  • Generalized seizure disorder—thought to arise throughout the brain, not from a single focal location
  • Partial seizure disorder (focal seizure)—caused by more localized abnormalities; happens within certain areas of the brain

Brain Cells (Neurons)

© 2009 Nucleus Medical Art, Inc.

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