Medical research

Epilepsy causes brain's defenses to collapse

What happens during an epileptic seizure? A recent study suggests that seizures occur after certain defense cells in the brain break down.

Neuroscience

Study shows why even well-controlled epilepsy can disrupt thinking

A study by Stanford University School of Medicine investigators may help explain why even people benefiting from medications for their epilepsy often continue to experience bouts of difficulty thinking, perceiving and remembering ...

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Seizure

An epileptic seizure is a transient symptom of excessive or synchronous neuronal activity in the brain. It can manifest as an alteration in mental state, tonic or clonic movements, convulsions, and various other psychic symptoms (such as déjà vu or jamais vu). The medical syndrome of recurrent, unprovoked seizures is termed epilepsy, but seizures can occur in people who do not have epilepsy.

About 4% of people will have an unprovoked seizure by the age of 80 and only 30% to 40% or according to another study 50% chance of a second one. Treatment may reduce the chance of a second one by as much as half.

The treatment of epilepsy is a subspecialty of neurology; the study of seizures is part of neuroscience. Doctors who specialize in epilepsy are epileptologists; doctors who specialize in the treatment of children with epilepsy are pediatric epileptologists.

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