Download e-book Beyond my Control: One Mans Struggle with Epilepsy, Seizure Surgery & Beyond

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The tongue may be bitten.

Beyond My Control: One Man's Struggle with Epilepsy, Seizure Surgery & Beyond

A frothy saliva may appear around the mouth. Breathing may be very shallow and even stop for a few moments. Sometimes the skin turns a bluish color because breathing may be briefly interrupted and the blood doesn't get as much oxygen as usual. After a minute or two the jerking movements slow down and the seizure ends naturally. Bladder or bowel control may be lost as the body relaxes after the seizure. Consciousness will then slowly return. Partial seizures in the elderly may produce uncontrolled shaking, alter emotions, or change the way things look, smell, feel, taste or sound to the person having the seizure.

When people have these experiences, yet stay fully conscious, the episodes are called simple partial seizures. But there's nothing simple about them to an older person going through this experience. When familiar surroundings suddenly look different, when people hear voices and nobody's there, when they see images -- perhaps of a loved one who's passed on, or an object that suddenly appears where it's not supposed to be -- it can be terrifying.

Episodes of this kind are caused by electrical disturbances in the part of the brain that controls senses such as sight causing visual disturbances , or hearing producing the illusion of voices or sounds or even memory creating perhaps an image of the past or blocking recognition of familiar places. However, elderly people may not talk about these episodes, even to their doctors, because they're afraid they're losing their minds. They're not, of course. These are seizures, not symptoms of mental illness.

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And the doctor should be told about them because these seizures may require a medicine that's different from what he or she might otherwise prescribe. They affect consciousness while they're happening and people can't remember them afterwards. Complex partial seizures typically produce a kind of confused, dreamlike state. A senior citizen with complex partial seizures may stare, make chewing movements with the mouth, pick at clothing, mumble, do the same actions over and over again.

He or she won't be able to talk to other people while the seizure is going on, but may respond to simple requests made in a calm, friendly voice. Complex partial seizures are particularly common in older people with epilepsy, but they occur at any age. Sometimes people wander during these episodes. Visit store. See other items More See all. Item Information Condition:. Sign in to check out Check out as guest.

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