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What is Epilepsy? How to detect epilepsy?

What is Epilepsy? How to detect epilepsy?

Epilepsy can be described as a chronic neurological disorder which is characterised by repeated and unprovoked attacks. Epilepsy causes a disturbance in normal neuron activity as a result patient suffers from muscle spasms, strange behavioural pattern and unconsciousness.EEG

How to detect epilepsy

It is difficult to diagnose because many other medical conditions exhibit the same symptoms as epilepsy.

The patient is diagnosed based on the information as to what had happened to him/her prior, during and after the seizures.

The patient can help the doctor in diagnosing the disease by taking a detailed report of the seizures. He/she should take someone along who has witnessed the symptoms during the visit.

The patient can also take video clips of seizures during an appointment. Some medical tests for detecting epilepsy includes blood tests are to be done in the hospital. These can be:

  • EEG (electroencephalogram)

This test is used to record the electrical signals in human brain. During the test, if any epileptic activity occurs in the patient's brain, the doctor can get information about it on the computer screen. But it will not show about the past and cannot predict the future attacks. However it can be of great help to the doctors.

  • CT scans (computerised tomography)

CT scan can find out if there is something abnormal in a patient's brain like a scar or damaged portion.

  • MRI scans (magnetic resonance imaging)

MRI scanner is more powerful than CT scanner which makes use of radio waves and magnetic field to find out the presence of any abnormality in the brain.

Treatment

It can be treated by surgery or medication. If the cause of epilepsy is due to tumour, abnormality in blood vessels or sudden bleeding in the brain then doctors can recommend surgery. Anticonvulsants are prescribed by doctors to minimize seizures.

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