Understanding Epilepsy
By Winchester Neurological Consultants
August 09, 2022
Tags: Epilepsy  

How your neurologist in Winchester, VA, can diagnose and treat epilepsy

Epilepsy is the fourth most common neurological disorder in the world, according to the Epilepsy Foundation. The condition involves disturbances in the nerve cells in the brain. These disturbances result in seizures which can be mild to severe. Epilepsy is best diagnosed and treated by a neurologist.

The doctors at Winchester Neurological Consultants in Winchester, VA, provide a wide range of neurological services, including diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy.

Epilepsy can be caused by several different factors, including:

  • Genetics
  • Head trauma
  • Brain tumors
  • Developmental disorders
  • Structural abnormalities in the brain
  • Infections, including meningitis and encephalitis

There are several signs and symptoms which may indicate the onset of an epileptic seizure, including:

  • Confusion
  • Blank staring
  • Muscle rigidity
  • Uncontrolled jerking of arms and legs
  • Loss of consciousness
  • A sense of anxiety or fear

A seizure can become a medical emergency and be life threatening. You need to seek out emergency medical care if:

  • The seizure lasts longer than 5 minutes
  • A second seizure follows right after the first
  • A high fever is present
  • The person having the seizure is pregnant
  • The person having the seizure is diabetic
  • An injury occurs during the seizure
  • The seizures continue even with anti-seizure medication

Epilepsy is diagnosed with a neurological examination which can include blood tests to determine whether an infection is causing the seizures. Other diagnostic tests include:

An electroencephalogram (EEG) which records electrical activity in your brain

Computerized tomography (CT) scan which provides images of your brain in cross-section

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which provides detailed images of your brain to identify tumors and other abnormalities.

The standard of treatment for epilepsy is anti-seizure medication. The type of medication prescribed depends on the type and frequency of seizures, and other factors.

Surgery may be recommended if the seizures originate in a small area of the brain that isn’t involved in speaking, motor function, hearing, or vision.

To read more detailed information about epilepsy and the Neurodevelopmental Clinic at Winchester Neurological Consultants, please click here.

To learn more about the diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy, talk with the experts. Call the doctors at Winchester Neurological Consultants in Winchester, VA. You can reach them in the office by calling (540) 667-1828, so call today.