Focal (Partial) Seizure

Focal , or partial, seizures are caused by abnormal electrical activity which begin in one portion of the brain, but may spread to other areas during an episode. Some focal seizures may not affect memory or awareness. Other focal seizures do involve enough brain tissue to affect memory and awareness, as well as behavior, before, during, and immediately following the episode. In over 30% of cases secondary generalization occurs, which is when the partial seizures expand into seizures that affect the whole brain and cause loss of consciousness and convulsive activity.

The best thing for anyone to do who is witnessing a seizure is to try remove any objects nearby that pose a risk for injury, and to monitor their breathing and pulse. Never try to hold down someone who is having an active seizure or to place objects in their mouth, as this can unintentionally cause injury.

Seizures that are prolonged require immediate medical attention.  Seizures may be a sign of a serious underlying neurological issue.  They may cause injury, pose safety risks, and have negative effects on mental and physical wellbeing.  Seek out a medical professional if you may be suffering the symptoms of a seizure.

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The Northwell Comprehensive Epilepsy Center is one of the largest and most comprehensive programs on Long Island for the evaluation, diagnosis and medical and surgical treatments of epilepsy.


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