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What is Epilepsy?

Epilepsy is a medical condition that produces seizures affecting a variety of mental and physical functions. It’s also called a seizure disorder. When a person has two or more seizures, they are considered to have epilepsy.

A seizure happens when a brief, strong surge of electrical activity affects part or all of the brain. One in 10 adults will have a seizure sometime during their life.

Seizures can last from a few seconds to a few minutes. They can have many symptoms, from convulsions and loss of consciousness to some that are not always recognized as seizures by the person experiencing them or by health care professionals: blank staring, lip smacking, or jerking movements of arms and legs.

  • Epilepsy is the fourth most common neurological disorder and affects people of all ages.
  • Epilepsy means the same thing as “seizure disorders.”
  • Epilepsy is characterized by unpredictable seizures and can cause other health problems.
  • Epilepsy is a spectrum condition with a wide range of seizure types and control varying from person-to-person.
  • Public misunderstandings of epilepsy cause challenges that are often worse than the seizures.

Do you know what to do when someone has a seizure? Seizure First Aid