Many doctors have the impression that elderly-onset epilepsy is uncommon. This has no basis in the recent literature. There is evidence from many countries e.g. USA, Denmark, that the incidence of seizures rises sharply in old age. The United Kingdom National General Practice Survey of Epilepsy and Epileptic Seizures (NGPSE), a prospective-based, community-based study found that 24% of new cases of definite epilepsy were in subjects over the age of 60. A study of a primary care database covering 82 practices and nearly 370 000 subjects, 62 000 of whom were over the age of 60, revealed a continuing rise in the incidence of seizures in old age, whereas the incidence for the overall population was 69 per
100 000, the incidence in the 65 to 69 age group was 87, in the 70s, 147 per 100 000, and in the 80s, 159 per 100 000. Over one-third of all incident cases placed on antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) were individuals over the age of 60.