Identifying Seizures

It is often hard to distinguish seizure types.  This information is for educational purposes only, and should not take the place of seizure typing by video EEG through a certified epileptologist.

Absence Seizures (click for details)

These seizures are most often diagnosed because of their tendency to appear as brief generalized epileptic seizures with sudden onset and termination. Characterized by the impairment of consciousness, thus absence.

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Atonic Seizures (click for details)

Atonic seizures are diagnosed by the sudden loss of tone to the head, or even postural muscles. Prolonged atonic seizures can cause loss of consciousness, which is quickly regained.

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Atypical Absence Seizure (click for details)

Similar to a typical absence seizure, the subject will stare, but still be somewhat responsive. Eye fluttering and lip jerks are common. This kind of seizure is also trademark of Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.
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Clonic seizures (click for details)

This type of seizure is typically described as generalized clonic contractions jerking the body, without the tonic phase. May occur on one side of the body and is said to be a focal clonic or hemi-clonic seizure, as in this video.

Gelastic Seizures (click for details)

These seizures are identified by a sudden outburst of emotion, in many cases, laughter.

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Infantile Spasms (click for details)

 

Infantile spasms (also called West syndrome because it was first described by Dr. William James West, in the 1840s) consist of a sudden jerk followed by stiffening. Often the arms are flung out as the knees are pulled up and the body bends forward (“jackknife seizures”). Less often, the head can be thrown back as the body and legs stiffen in a straight-out position, or movements can be more subtle and limited to the neck or other body parts. Each seizure lasts only a second or two but they usually occur close together in a series. Sometimes the spasms are mistaken for colic, but the cramps of colic do not occur in a series.

Infantile spasms are most common just after waking up and rarely occur during sleep.

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Massive Bilateral Myoclonus (click for details)

This type of seizure is identified by a single or burst of axial jerks that most frequently only affect the upper body, however, it is possible for this type of seizure to affect the whole body. This is the most common type of seizure in benign and juvenile myoclonic epilepsy and Dravet syndrome.

We apologize as we currently do not have a sample video at this time.

Myoclonic Seizure (click for details)

Myoclonic seizures or twitches are brief contractions, or relaxations, of a muscle or muscle group, resulting in a sudden, jumpy movement

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C8QAg-wdl-s&feature=related

Neocortical Temporal Lobe Seizures (click for details)

These relatively rare seizures begin with an aura of a rising epigastric sensation and then move to oro-alimentary and manual automatisms. Initial symptoms include hallucinations and vertigo.

As these seizures are defined by EEGs and patient symptoms that vary between each patient, no videos are available.

Tonic-Clonic Seizures (click for details)

Tonic-Clonic Seizures are identified as a seizure involving the entire body, usually involving: muscle rigidity, violent muscle contractions, and loss of consciousness. They may occur at any age, as a single episode, or as a chronic condition.

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Tonic Seizures (click for details)

Muscle tone is greatly increased in a tonic seizure, while consciousness is often preserved. Arms will often rise above the head. This kind of seizure is also common in Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.

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