Wikipedia Precis

This revision: 26th April 2013 .
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Epilepsy is a common and diverse set of chronic neurological disorders characterized by seizures.[1][2] Some definitions of epilepsy require that seizures be recurrent and unprovoked,[1][3][4] but others require only a single seizure combined with brain alterations which increase the chance of future seizures.[5]

Epileptic seizures result from abnormal, excessive or hypersynchronous neuronal activity in the brain.[5]

About 50 million people worldwide have epilepsy, and nearly 80% of epilepsy occurs in developing countries.[3]

Epilepsy becomes more common as people age.[7][8]

Onset of new cases occurs most frequently in infants and the elderly.[9]

As a consequence of brain surgery, epileptic seizures may occur in recovering patients.

Epilepsy is usually controlled, but not cured, with medication. However, more than 30% of people with epilepsy do not have seizure control even with the best available medications. Surgery may be considered in difficult cases.[10][11]

Not all epilepsy syndromes are lifelong – some forms are confined to particular stages of childhood.

Epilepsy should not be understood as a single disorder, but rather as syndromic with vastly divergent symptoms, all involving episodic abnormal electrical activity in the brain and numerous seizures.

Useful Links

Epilepsy Action

A great website on epilepsy with plenty of detailed information. A forum, sections for kids and research archive are amongst the highlights.

Kids Information

A colourful mini-site from Epilepsy Action providing good advice and information for younger kids.

National Society for Epilepsy

Good site including First Aid information and plenty of expert information and articles.


The National Centre for Young People with Epilepsy provide education, treatment and care for children and young people with epilepsy. The site has much information of use to teachers and parents.

Epilepsy Research Foundation

An excellent source of epilepsy related research and articles for free download.

Int League Against Epilepsy

Homepage of a long-standing Internation organisation supporting health professionals with a substantial archive of resources

Teacher's Guide

A concise summary of essential information for teachers of epileptic children from Epilepsy Action includes an Epilepsy Policy Document for schools.

Coping With Epilepsy

A great place for parents, teachers and others to get first-hand advice, Coping with Epilsepy is a busy web forum.

Epilepsy Classroom

A collection of classroom resources, lesson plans and information sheets intended to raise awareness of epilepsy in educational settings. Great resource with teaching activities for all ages of student in addition to useful info for staff development.

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