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Active Member
Sep 10, 2004

What is Epilepsy?
  • A convulsion (or a seizure, or 'fit') is an abnormal event that results from a sudden change in the electrical function of cells in the brain.
  • 'Epilepsy' describes the tendency to have such fits, even if there is a long gap between them.
  • Epilepsy is a common disorder affecting up to 1-2% of the population.
  • Epilepsy is a physical condition caused by sudden, brief changes in how the brain works.
  • Epilepsy occurs when nerve cells in the brain send electrical messages at a rate of up to four times higher than normal which causes a sort of electrical storm in the brain, known as a seizure or convulsion (fit).
  • A pattern of repeated seizure is referred to as epilepsy.
  • There are several different types of epilepsy. Epilepsy is divided into various types according to the type of fit that is experienced.
  • Generalised fits affecting the whole body are called 'grand mal' or 'generalised'. Another term that is used is 'tonic-clonic' seizures because there is jerking of the limbs (the clonic part of the term) alternating with spasm or rigidity of the limbs (tonic).
  • Sometimes the fits only affect one part of the body, like an arm or a leg, and these are called 'focal' or 'partial' seizures.
  • Terms also used in the description of epilepsy refer to whether consciousness is lost or impaired, or not. When it is, they are sometimes called 'complex'; and 'simple' if consciousness is maintained.
  • Usually in grand mal fits, the person loses consciousness.
  • Petit mal attacks are periods of brief absence, seen in children, without the convulsion.
How do you get Epilepsy?
  • In more than half of sufferers, no cause can be found for their epilepsy.
  • Known causes include head injuries, some infectious illnesses, problems in brain development before birth, and (very rarely) brain tumours.
  • Some patients appear to inherit the tendency.
  • Convulsions can sometimes occur in young children (under 5 years) with high body temperatures (febrile convulsions). In the majority they don't have recurrent seizures and they are not regarded as 'epilepsy' proper.
How serious is Epilepsy?
Medication controls seizures for most patients, who are otherwise healthy and able to live full and productive lives.

Generally, epilepsy is treated with anti-convulsant medication prescribed by doctors.

Epilepsy is my nemesis. I live with it daily (not me, but someone in my life) I hate it with a passion.
Me too Dotty, not so much now but before I left home.
Mr Dot has continuous seizures due to scar tissue on his brain left by a car accident that he was in as a teenager. For years he was seizure free thanks to his medicatation and in genearal following a healthy lifestyle with a well balanced diet and plenty of sleep. About 3 1/2 years ago he got lazy with his meds, he stopped eating properly and sleeping properly. His seizures got so bad that my family doctor was ready to admit him to hospital. His neurologist doesn't understand why with the amount of medication he is taking, that he continues to have seizures. To me its simple. Nobody can maintain a health lifestyle on a diet of sugar, ciggarettes and staying up watching tv all night. On top of that not being honest with his doctor. He is now possibly facing nuerorsurgery (extreme measure) which might leave him in a worse condition. All the medical treatments in the world won't help someone who wont take responsibility for himself. Sorry if this sounds bitter, but after the last few weeks I am feeling kind of bitter.
It's not bitter at all, he's been given the tools in order to control things but refuses to follow the advice. I think anyone in the same situation as Mrs Dot-a-lot would feel the same.