Types of Epilepsy

There are several different types of seizures as well as different types of epilepsy. Depending on the types of symptoms experienced, doctors have classified epilepsy into different epilepsy syndromes. These include:

  • Absence Epilepsy: This type of epilepsy begins in childhood or adolescence and is largely genetic. Absence seizures can cause jerky movements or brief periods of loss of consciousness. However, these seizures have no long lasting effects on intelligence or brain functioning and children tend to grow out of this type of epilepsy once they hit puberty.
  • Temporal Lobe Epilepsy: Also known as TLE, these are seizures associated with auras. This type of epilepsy can alter the structure of the brain over time if not treated early and effectively.
  • Neocortical Epilepsy: Seizures of neocortical occur in the cortex of the brain and can be generalized or focal in nature. Symptoms include hallucinations, mood changes, spasms, and convulsions.
  • Progressive epilepsy syndrome refers to epilepsy symptoms such as seizures and cognitive function which progressively worsen over time.
  • Other epilepsy syndromes include Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and Rasmussen's encephalitis. Both these begin in childhood and can be severe and difficult to treat.
  • There are also epilepsy syndromes that are labeled as benign as do they do not impair functioning or development. These include “benign infantile encephalopathy” and “benign neonatal convulsions.”
  • Infantile epilepsy begins before the age of six months and produces symptoms such as spasms and seizures.

Frequently asked questions
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