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Chapter 3 - Seizures and status epilepticus

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  07 October 2011

S. Andrew Josephson
Affiliation:
University of California, San Francisco
W. David Freeman
Affiliation:
Mayo Clinic
David J. Likosky
Affiliation:
Evergreen Hospital Medical Center, Kirkland, WA
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Summary

Acute seizures and status epilepticus (SE) are common in various types of acute brain injury. The proportion of patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) with new-onset seizures is estimated at 26%. Acute symptomatic seizures are referred to as provoked seizures, situation-related seizures, and reactive seizures. These are seizures that occur in close temporal relationship to a documented brain insult or at the time of an acute systemic insult. Epilepsy is a tendency toward unprovoked recurrent seizures and is the most common reason for seizure occurrences in the hospital. Most seizures that occur in adulthood are focal seizures that arise from disrupted lobar or hemispheric function. SE is the most feared complication for patients with seizures (PWS) because recurrent seizures and SE are more difficult to suppress than single seizures and can be life-threatening, especially when they occur as a primary complication of a neurological or organ system disease.
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2011

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