Epilepsy is a condition in which an individual experiences more than one seizure over a period of time. A seizure is a change in sensation, awareness or behavior brought about by a brief electrical disturbance in the brain.
A seizure is a temporary change in a person’s movements, sensations, or consciousness caused by an abnormal electrical discharge of the nerve cells in the brain. A seizure can take many forms depending on where in the brain it starts and where it spreads. While there are many different types of seizures, not all are convulsions.
In the United States, one in every 100 people suffers from seizures or epilepsy. In the Chesapeake Region, there are about 74,000 individuals with epilepsy.
Many different things can cause seizures. Low blood sugar, chemical imbalances, abnormal brain development, head injury, stroke, and drug and alcohol abuse, to name a few. But many times, especially in children, doctors cannot find a cause and will say the seizures are “idiopathic” which means the cause cannot be found. Idiopathic seizures are far more likely to be outgrown or controlled than seizures with a known cause. To read more information on epilepsy and seizures, click and read Seizures and Epilepsy: Facts About Seizure Disorder. This is a publication of Abilities Network/The Epilepsy Foundation of the Chesapeake Region(EFCR).
The questions presented here and in Seizures and Epilepsy: Facts about Seizure Disorder, are basic questions people ask about epilepsy. If you have further questions, please call Abilities Network/Epilepsy Foundation of the Chesapeake Region at 410-828-7700 or 800-492-2523. You can also call the Epilepsy Foundation’s National Office at 800-EFA-1000 or visit www.epilepsyfoundation.org, where further information can be found. Remember, a good, caring physician should either be willing to answer a person’s questions, or be able to refer them to a place where they can get answers.