Understanding the Basics of Epilepsy

Doctor who explains to patient

There are many different types of epilepsy, which cause seizures and brain damage ranging from benign to life-threatening. Individuals with epilepsy may have illnesses, abnormalities in brain development, or brain damage resulting from injuries. Each of these causes can lead to disturbances in the wiring of the brain that supports neuron activity. As a result, patients with epilepsy suffer from repeated seizures that could be a significant disturbance in daily life, or even a cause for severe disability. This article will discuss more of the details of epilepsy, which is still being heavily researched to potentially find a cure or preventable causes.

Diagnosing Epilepsy

A single seizure does not necessarily indicate epilepsy, because there are outside factors like stroke or fever that may cause a one-time seizure. Once a person has had two or more seizures, epilepsy will be considered as a diagnosis, and measurements of electrical activity in the brain will reveal abnormalities characteristic of epileptic brain disorders.

Finding Treatment

Because there is such a wide range of epilepsies, treatment can vary drastically from patient to patient. The age of a patient can guide his or her treatment, because certain medications can have severe side effects or be ineffective for children with epilepsy. Depending on the needs of the patient, treatment might include medication, surgical therapies, or dietary changes. Working with a neurologist specializing in epilepsy will be the best route to the most beneficial treatment.

Living with Epilepsy

Even with treatment to manage epilepsy, it may be hard to avoid emotional and behavioral issues along with the stigma associated with the disorder. Therefore, patients may choose to participate in support groups or counseling to manage the emotional impact of epilepsy while using more conventional treatment options.

The Epilepsy Center at Sunrise Hospital is the only center of its type in the state of Nevada with a dedicated Chief Epileptologist who can guide your care. You can explore the state-of-the-art technology featured in our Epilepsy Center on our website or by calling (702) 233-5300.

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