A Brief History of Epilepsy
Forms of Epilepsy
Treatment of Epilepsy
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1. Basics of Epilepsy
2. Electron Transmission
3. Seizures in the Brain
Forms of Epilepsy
Epilepsy can be described as intense spontaneous
local activity of nerve cells within the central nervous system (Beaumanoir,
1998; Menini & Silva-Barrat, 1998; Penfield, 1955). This is necessarily
a very broad definition because of the many areas within the central nervous
system that epilepsy can strike (Dreifuss, 1998; Remillard et al., 1998;
Glanz, 1997; Barinaga, 1996). Epilepsy can be broken into two main
types, symptomatic epilepsy, and idiopathic epilepsy. Symptomatic
epilepsy involves those cases where the cause of the seizures can be determined.
Idiopathic epilepsy describes all other epileptic cases whose cause cannot
be identified (Penfield, 1954).
Symptomatic epilepsies can also be broken
down into two main categories: genetic epilepsy, and aquired epilepsy.
The general known causes for symptomatic epilepsy are: birth defects, toxic
substances affecting the brain, lesions caused by accident or hemorrhaging,
and finally, neurocirculatory dysfunction. In clinical terms,
seizures are generally catagorized according to the table below.
Table 1. Seizure Classification (adapted from The
|Type of Seizure (broad)
||Type of Seizure (specific)
||Simple Partial Seizures
||No loss of consciousness
||Complex Partial Seizures
||Some alteration of awareness
||Loss of consciousness for short times
||Limbs become stiff and rigid followed by violent convulsions
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Updated April, 2000
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