After having their first seizure, 50% of people go on to develop epilepsy. The physicians at Complete Neurological Care specialize in diagnosing and treating epilepsy, providing the ongoing management you need for your unique medical needs. If you have a seizure, don’t wait to call the nearest office or book an appointment online. The practice has locations in New York City — Forest Hills and Astoria neighborhoods in Queens, and the Financial District, Midtown, and Washington Heights neighborhoods in Manhattan — as well as offices in Valley Stream and Hicksville, New York, and Passaic, New Jersey.
Epilepsy is a neurological condition defined by repeated seizures. Your provider diagnoses epilepsy after you have at least two seizures that an underlying medical condition does not cause. You may also be diagnosed with epilepsy after one seizure if you have a high risk of having another seizure in the future.
Seizures occur due to a sudden burst of abnormal electrical activity in your brain. The nerves (neurons) in your brain normally generate regular electrical impulses. You have a seizure when these impulses become overactive and chaotic, causing temporary changes in your movement, behavior, or level of consciousness.
Nonepileptic seizures develop from many possible medical conditions. A few examples include:
Alcohol or drug abuse, flashing lights, and even a lack of sleep can also trigger a seizure.
Though epilepsy has one primary symptom, seizures, you may experience many different seizure symptoms. A few of the most common include:
Most seizures last 30 seconds to two minutes. Afterward, you may feel fine, or it could take hours to return to feeling like your usual self.
After reviewing your medical history and performing a physical and neurological exam, you have an electroencephalogram (EEG). Your EEG reveals abnormal brain waves and is the primary test for diagnosing epilepsy.
You may also need an ambulatory EEG or a video EEG. A video EEG records what happens if you have a seizure during your EEG. During an ambulatory EEG, you wear a device that records your brain activity over several days.
Depending on the results of your EEG, you may also need a transcranial Doppler ultrasound, MRI, or CT scan. These techniques produce images of your brain showing blood flowing through your brain, where the seizures occur, and other problems such as tumors, damage from a stroke, and degenerative disease.
Epilepsy treatment at Complete Neurological Care focuses on taking medication to prevent future seizures. These medications, called anticonvulsants, work by regulating brain chemicals.
Your provider may also recommend vagus nerve stimulation or a ketogenic diet. However, when medications fail to stop your seizures or side effects prevent you from taking medications, you may need epilepsy surgery.
Your provider may recommend deep brain stimulation or another type of surgery, depending on variables like where the seizures start in your brain.
Whether you just had a seizure or need ongoing management for epilepsy, call Complete Neurological Care, or book an appointment online today.