★symptoms •treatment

Overview

What is Epilepsy?

Synonyms: seizure

It is a temporary and reversible alteration of brain function, which was not caused by fever, drugs or metabolic disorders, and is expressed by repeated seizures.

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causes

The cause may be a brain injury resulting from a sharp blow to the head, an infection (meningitis, for example), cysticercosis ("lonely eggs" in the brain), alcohol abuse, drugs etc. Sometimes something that occurred before or during delivery. Often it is not possible to know the causes that gave rise to epilepsy.

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symptoms

Symptoms of Epilepsy

Epileptic seizures can manifest themselves in different ways:

The seizure is the most popular way for people and is identified as "seizure". In this type of seizure the person may fall to the ground, have muscle contractions throughout the body, tongue biting, intense salivation, panting, and sometimes even urinate.

The crisis of the type "absence" It is known as "disconnections". The person is staring, lost contact with the medium for a few seconds. To be of short duration, it is often not perceived by family members and / or teachers.

There is a kind of crisis that manifests itself as if the people were "alert" but has no control of his actions, making moves automatically. During these involuntary automatic movements, the person may become chewing, speaking in an incomprehensible way or walking without definite direction. In general, the person does not remember what happened when the crisis ends. This is a complex partial seizure call.

There are other types of seizures that can cause falls to the ground without any movement or contractions or else have strange visual or auditory perceptions or even transient changes in memory.

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Treatment and Care

Treatment of Epilepsy

Treatment of epilepsies is done by drugs that prevent the abnormal brain electrical discharges, which are the origin of seizures. It is believed that at least 25% of patients with epilepsy in Brazil are carriers in more severe stages, ie, in need of medication for life, and the often uncontrollable crises and then candidates for surgical intervention. In Brazil there are already surgical treatment centers approved by the Ministry of Health.

What to do during crises:

  • place the person lying on his back in a comfortable place, close to removing objects that it can be hurt like bracelets, watches, sunglasses
  • insert a piece of cloth or a handkerchief between the teeth to prevent tongue biting
  • chin lift to facilitate the passage of air
  • loose clothes
  • if the person is drooling, keep it lying with his head turned to the side, preventing it from choking on his own saliva
  • when the crisis pass, let the person rest
  • check for bracelet, medal or other emergency medical identification that may suggest the cause of the seizure
  • never hold the person (let struggling)
  • do not give tapas
  • do not throw water on it.

Drugs for Epilepsy

The most commonly used drugs to treat some symptoms of epilepsy are:

  • Amato
  • carbamazepine
  • clonazepam
  • Clopam
  • Diamox
  • Depakene
  • phenytoin
  • phenytoin sodium
  • Gabaneurin
  • gabapentin
  • Hidantal
  • Lyrica
  • oxcarbazepine
  • Rivotril
  • topiramate

Only a doctor can tell what the most appropriate medicine for your case as well as the correct dosage and duration of treatment. Always follow strictly the guidelines of your doctor and NEVER automedique. Do not stop the drug without consulting a doctor before and, taking it more than once or in much larger quantities than prescribed, follow the instructions on the label.

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Useful links

  • Brazilian League of Epilepsy

Questions about epilepsy

  • No cure for epilepsy?
  • What causes epilepsy?

Sources and references

  • Ministry of Health