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FAQs

What are the symptoms of Epilepsy?
  • Fits are of many types. The symptoms found in most of the cases are:
  • Sudden fainting & falling on ground.
  • Face turning to one side.
  • Eyes becoming glossy.
  • Clenching of fists.
  • Bending of neck to one side.
  • Foaming in the mouth.
  • Feeling of giddiness for a second.
  • Fainting with oh’–oh’/go’–go’ sound or even headache with giddiness.
  • Seizures during Menstrual period in women.
What Causes Epilepsy?
Epilepsy is a disorder with many possible causes. Anything that interrupts the brain’s normal activity can lead to seizures. Epilepsy can be inherited, or it can result from a birth defect, birth or head injury, brain tumor, or an infection in the brain. In some cases, epilepsy may develop due to abnormal nerve connections that form as the brain heals after a head injury, stroke, or other problem. In about 70 percent of people with epilepsy, the exact cause cannot be determined. When the exact cause of epilepsy is not known, it is referred to as idiopathic epilepsy.
What is a seizure?
Epilepsy is a disorder with many possible causes. Anything that interrupts the brain’s normal activity can lead to seizures. Epilepsy can be inherited, or it can result from a birth defect, birth or head injury, brain tumor, or an infection in the brain. In some cases, epilepsy may develop due to abnormal nerve connections that form as the brain heals after a head injury, stroke, or other problem. In about 70 percent of people with epilepsy, the exact cause cannot be determined. When the exact cause of epilepsy is not known, it is referred to as idiopathic epilepsy.
How is epilepsy treated?
Before a person begins treatment, the first step is to ensure that the diagnosis of epilepsy is correct and to determine, if possible, the type of epilepsy and whether there are any underlying conditions that also need treatment. This will require a careful review of the person’s medical history and a neurological examination. Other tests may be recommended as well, usually including an electroencephalogram (EEG) and often a brain scan; such as a computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The medical decision about how best to treat the epilepsy is based on this evaluation.
Antiepileptic drugs are the mainstay of treatment for most people. There are now many drugs available, and a doctor may recommend one or more of these based on several individual patient factors such as the type of epilepsy, the frequency and severity of the seizures, age, and related health conditions. After starting a medication, close monitoring is required for awhile to assess the effectiveness of the drug as well as possible side effects. Early in treatment, dosage adjustments in dosage are often required. Sometimes, because of continued seizures or significant side effects, it is necessary to change to a different drug. For about two-thirds or more of people with epilepsy receiving optimum treatment, drugs are successful in fully controlling seizures. For the remainder, although drugs may have a partial benefit, some seizures continue to occur. For some of these people, other treatment options may be considered.
Surgery. With certain types of partial epilepsy, especially when it can be determined that seizures consistently arise from a single area of the brain called the seizure focus, surgery to remove that focus may be effective in stopping future seizures or making them much easier to control with medication. Epilepsy surgery is most commonly performed when a seizure focus is located within the temporal lobe of the brain. This may need further advanced tests from an epileptologist -such as special sequence MRI scan even if previous simple screening MRI has been done, video EEG , SPECT or PET SCAN and neuropsychological evaluation or a functional MRI scan as required.
Surgery for epilepsy is available at few specialized epilepsy centres in India and abroad and is useful in carefully evaluated persons with epilepsy by a dedicated epileptologist and his team in a comprehensive manner. When this happens 5-10 % of resitiatn or difficult to treat epilepsy with focal brain disturbance , if not in an important brain area, can be surgically treated with good results for seizures reduction or total stoppage and improved quality of life.
Other options. Other supplemental treatments are sometimes beneficial when medications alone are inadequate and surgery is not possible. These include vagus nerve stimulation, where an electrical device is implanted to intermittently stimulate a large nerve in the neck, Alternative treatment such as specialized Yoga techniques and the ketogenic diet, a high fat, low carbohydrate diet with restricted calories.
At what age does epilepsy start? Is it hereditary?
  • Fits are of many types. The symptoms found in most of the cases are:
  • Sudden fainting & falling on ground.
  • Face turning to one side.
  • Eyes becoming glossy.
  • Clenching of fists.
  • Bending of neck to one side.
  • Foaming in the mouth.
  • Feeling of giddiness for a second.
  • Fainting with oh’–oh’/go’–go’ sound or even headache with giddiness.
  • Seizures during Menstrual period in women.
How can I help someone who is having a seizure?
  • Fits are of many types. The symptoms found in most of the cases are:
  • Sudden fainting & falling on ground.
  • Face turning to one side.
  • Eyes becoming glossy.
  • Clenching of fists.
  • Bending of neck to one side.
  • Foaming in the mouth.
  • Feeling of giddiness for a second.
  • Fainting with oh’–oh’/go’–go’ sound or even headache with giddiness.
  • Seizures during Menstrual period in women.
How do the doctors know that a person has epilepsy?
  • Fits are of many types. The symptoms found in most of the cases are:
  • Sudden fainting & falling on ground.
  • Face turning to one side.
  • Eyes becoming glossy.
  • Clenching of fists.
  • Bending of neck to one side.
  • Foaming in the mouth.
  • Feeling of giddiness for a second.
  • Fainting with oh’–oh’/go’–go’ sound or even headache with giddiness.
  • Seizures during Menstrual period in women.
How long is treatment necessary for epilepsy?
  • Fits are of many types. The symptoms found in most of the cases are:
  • Sudden fainting & falling on ground.
  • Face turning to one side.
  • Eyes becoming glossy.
  • Clenching of fists.
  • Bending of neck to one side.
  • Foaming in the mouth.
  • Feeling of giddiness for a second.
  • Fainting with oh’–oh’/go’–go’ sound or even headache with giddiness.
  • Seizures during Menstrual period in women.
Is Epilepsy related to mental illness?
  • Fits are of many types. The symptoms found in most of the cases are:
  • Sudden fainting & falling on ground.
  • Face turning to one side.
  • Eyes becoming glossy.
  • Clenching of fists.
  • Bending of neck to one side.
  • Foaming in the mouth.
  • Feeling of giddiness for a second.
  • Fainting with oh’–oh’/go’–go’ sound or even headache with giddiness.
  • Seizures during Menstrual period in women.
Can Epilepsy affect intelligence?
Seizures can affect intelligence, so prompt diagnosis and rapid control of seizures is important. There is also a risk if seizures are prolonged and there is a significant reduction in oxygen in the brain during seizures. However, these are extremely rare occurrences. In the case of developmentally delayed persons with Epilepsy, it is most likely that the cause of the developmental delay is also the cause of the seizures. In most cases, people with Epilepsy have normal intelligence.
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