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Seizure disorders and management 

Seizure disorders and management
Chapter:
Seizure disorders and management
Author(s):

Steven C. Schachter

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198701590.003.0115
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date: 23 August 2019

Epilepsy is common and in developed countries with ageing populations, the highest incidence and prevalence of epilepsy is in older people. The classification of seizure types is based on the patient’s or an observer’s description of the seizure. Most new-onset seizures in elderly persons arise from a focal area of the brain, often causing vague and non-specific symptoms or observable behaviours such as motionless staring, blackouts, delirium, disorientation, or limb jerking. The goals of treatment are to fully control seizures without bothersome side effects. Antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) are the mainstay of therapy; selecting an AED is based on a number of factors. Therapy should be initiated with a low dose and slowly titrated as needed. This chapter reviews the epidemiology, clinical evaluation, and treatment considerations for new-onset epilepsy in older people.

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