What is seizure disorder?
Seizure is a symptom arising from the direct or indirect effects of central nervous system disease (CNS) or brain dysfunction. Such brain dysfunction can be accompanied by motor, sensory and autonomic disorders depending on the area of the brain involved either the organ itself or the spread to other organs.
Symptoms of seizures depend on the part of the brain affected and the type of seizure. But most often it is a clonic type seizure, in which there are two stages: the tonic or rigid stage followed by the clonic stage. In this type of attack the patient can only experience the tonic or clonic stage. This kind of attack is usually preceded by an aura.
What causes seizures?
Seizures are caused by disturbances in electrical activity, in part or all areas of the brain. The disorder can be triggered by disorders in the brain or other conditions that indirectly affect brain function, as explained below:
Disorders in the brain
Some disorders in the brain that cause seizures are:
- Brain tumors
- Infection of the lining of the brain (meningitis)
- Brain infection (encephalitis)
- Congenital abnormalities born in the brain
- Baby’s head injury at birth
- Head injury
- Abnormalities of blood vessels in the brain
- Cerebral palsy.
Conditions that affect the brain
While other conditions that can affect the brain and trigger seizures are:
- Heart disease
- High fever
- Uncontrolled high blood pressure
- Electrolyte disorders, such as hyponatremia
- Autoimmune diseases, such as lupus
- Drug Abuse
- Withdrawal symptoms of substances
- Blood sugar levels are not normal
- Build up of toxins in the body due to liver failure or kidney failure
- Animal stings or venomous animal bites
- Got electric shock.
In addition, seizures can also be a symptom of somatoform disorder, which is one type of psychological disorder.
Not all seizures will need treatment. Doctors usually decide to start treatment if you have experienced this disorder more than once. The treatment given will depend on the cause that occurs.
If you have seizures due to high fever, treatment will be focused on lowering the fever. Some medications may be given to avoid further seizures, especially if you are at risk of developing the condition at some point. People with epilepsy generally need medication to control seizures because they are at risk of experiencing this condition repeatedly.
However, in general, here are some forms of treatment that doctors may give to treat this disruption of electrical activity:
Administration of drugs
Administration of anti-seizure drugs is the main way to deal with this condition. Some of the usual choices of anti-seizure drugs given by doctors, namely lorazepam, pregabalin, gabapentin, diazepam, and others. Other medicines may also be given according to your condition.
Surgical procedures and therapy
If anti-seizure medications don’t work effectively, you may need to undergo other treatments, depending on the cause of your condition. Here are the forms of treatment that may be given:
- Surgery. In this procedure, the doctor will remove the area of the brain that is the cause of the seizure. This type of treatment is usually done in people with this condition which is always caused by brain disorders in the same part.
- Stimulation of the vagus nerve. In this procedure, a device will be implanted under the skin of the chest to stimulate the vagus nerve in the neck, which can send signals to the brain to inhibit seizures.
- Responsive neurostimulation. In this procedure, a device is implanted on the surface of the brain or inside the brain tissue to detect the activity of electrical disturbances and provide electrical stimulation to the detected part of the brain to stop the disorder.
- Deep brain stimulation (DBS). In this procedure, electrodes will be installed in certain areas of the brain to produce electrical impulses that regulate abnormal brain activity.
- Diet therapy. Doing a high-fat and low-carb diet, otherwise known as the keto diet, can reduce the possibility of recurrence of this condition.
In addition to the above treatments, you also need to adopt a healthy lifestyle to help prevent seizures in the future. A healthy lifestyle that needs to be implemented, such as getting enough rest and avoiding stress and consuming alco**hol. Also, avoid other possible triggers, such as flashing lights (including flashes from your phone’s camera when taking selfies or stop taking seizure medications.
First aid for seizure
Most seizures will stop on their own for a few seconds or minutes. However, as long as this condition occurs, a person can be injured. Therefore, it is important that you protect someone who is experiencing this condition to prevent it from getting injured. Here are the steps to protect the sufferer:
- Put the person in a safe place to prevent him from falling.
- Get rid of furniture or sharp objects around him that can hit the sufferer.
- Give a pillow or something soft and flat on his head.
- Loosen the patient’s tight clothes, especially around the neck.
- Tilt the body and head of the patient to one side. If vomiting occurs, this position can prevent vomiting from entering the lungs.
- Stay with the patient until recovery or until professional medical help arrives.
- When the jerking or vibration of the body stops, lay the sufferer into the recovery position.
In addition to doing the steps above, there are several other things that you also need to pay attention to when dealing with someone who has a seizure, namely:
- Do not resist the movement of the jerking of the sufferer.
- Do not put any objects in the mouth or between the victim’s teeth during a seizure, including your fingers.
- Do not try to hold the patient’s tongue.
- Do not move the person unless it is in an unsafe place or nearby there is an object that is dangerous to him.
- Do not shake the victim’s body to resuscitate him.
- Do not perform CPR or artificial breathing, unless the jerking of the body has stopped and the patient is not breathing or has no pulse.
- Do not feed or drink until the jerking completely stops.