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What are the symptoms of epilepsy?

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Quick Answer

The most common symptom of epilepsy is seizures, which can affect any area of the body and any process that the brain coordinates, according to the Mayo Clinic. Types of seizures include sudden jerking of the arms or legs, confusion, staring blankly into space and loss of consciousness.

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What are the symptoms of epilepsy?
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Full Answer

Epilepsy involves abnormal brain activity which may cause sudden and sporadic seizures. There are several types of epilepsy, and they all have different symptoms and causes, explains WebMD. Some terms that apply to various types of epilepsy are idiopathic, idiopathic partial, symptomatic, cryptogenic, focal and generalized.

"Idiopathic" indicates that the cause for the epilepsy is unknown. With this type of epilepsy, there is sometimes a family history of the condition. This is not always the case, however, notes WebMD. Idiopathic epilepsy often appears during childhood, but some patients are not diagnosed until they are adults. Magnetic resonance imaging technology or an EEG can be used to detect idiopathic epilepsy. Types of seizures common with this condition are staring spells, grand mal and myclonic seizures.

WebMD goes on to say that idiopathic partial epilepsy usually has a childhood onset. Symptoms often appear between the ages of 5 and 8. Family history may play a part in the development of idiopathic partial epilepsy. With this condition, seizures generally happen at night during sleeping hours.

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