Epilepsy

Epilepsy, also known as epilepsy among the people, occurs when cells in one part of the brain produce abnormal electrical signals, in other words, short circuit.

Epileptic seizures occur suddenly. It is caused by electrical activity spreading to the whole or a certain part of the brain. Seizure types vary depending on which part of the brain it begins. Epileptic seizures can be in the form of loss of consciousness, uncontrolled body movements, as well as uncomfortable feeling, drowsiness, drowsiness, strange tastes and smells, or diving. Most seizures last between 30 seconds and 2 minutes.

Reasons

  • Infections in the womb

  • Deprivation of oxygen during birth

  • Genetic and metabolic diseases

  • tumors

  • head trauma

  • Developmental brain malformations

  • Brain infections such as meningitis

Symptoms

  • Sudden contractions in the body

  • Uncontrollable movements in the arms and legs

  • unconsciousness

  • Inability to respond to sounds or speech for a short time

  • looking at a fixed point

  • Auras (numbness, changes in vision or hearing, nausea or pressure in the stomach, unpleasant smells, sudden fear)

Diagnosis

The most important step in the diagnosis of epilepsy is to take a detailed medical history, physical examination, neurological examination, and the patient’s/relative’s description of what happened during the seizure or recording it like a video. EEG and CT/MRI are other techniques used in diagnosis. EEG is a method that measures the electrical activity of the brain. It will be explained in detail in another chapter.

Treatment Methods

Most people with epilepsy can be treated with epilepsy medications. Medications are intended to stop seizures. Therefore, regular use of drugs is very important. Surgical treatments can be applied according to the underlying condition that causes epilepsy in patients who cannot improve or control seizures with drug therapy. Vagal nerve stimulator can be applied in suitable patients. The battery placed under the chest stimulates the vagus nerve at certain intervals and can reduce these seizures. A ketogenic diet can be tried, especially in seizures in childhood. In addition, methods such as managing stress, limiting alcoholic beverages, avoiding light stimuli and smoking are effective in preventing seizures.

What should be considered during the seizure?

It is wrong to place a hard object in the mouth of an epileptic person to prevent them from biting their tongue. The hard object may break the patient’s teeth or block his throat, preventing him from breathing. Therefore, the patient should be laid on his side during an epileptic seizure. In this way, if there is saliva or vomiting during the seizure, the patient’s escaping into the trachea is prevented. The head should be fixed so that it does not hit the head. Harmful objects in the environment should be removed and glasses, if any, should be removed. In addition, it should be ensured that the person is left empty and comfortable to breathe.

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