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Seizures Specialist

Tidewater Neurology -  - Neurology

Tidewater Neurology

Neurology Specialists located in West Ashley, Charleston, SC, Mt. Pleasant, SC & Goose Creek, SC

Medical conditions often trigger seizures. But if you have a seizure that a health problem is not the cause of, you have a high chance of having another seizure within the next six months. After a seizure, you should always schedule a thorough neurologic exam at Tidewater Neurology. Its medical team has years of experience determining the cause of a seizure and providing treatments to prevent future events. Call the office in Mt. Pleasant, Goose Creek, or the West Ashley area of Charleston, South Carolina, or book an appointment online today.

Seizures Q & A

What are seizures?

Seizures occur when the nerves in your brain suddenly become overactive and send out an abnormal surge of electrical activity. The electrical surge is temporary, but the chaotic activity affects your movements, behaviors, and senses.

How do seizures differ from epilepsy?

Seizures arise from many underlying medical conditions, including:

  • Stroke
  • High fever
  • Low blood sugar
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Imbalance of calcium or potassium
  • Central nervous system infection
  • Certain medications
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Blood vessel conditions in the brain
  • Inflammatory brain condition
  • Brain tumor

You have epilepsy when you have two or more seizures that are not caused by a medical condition.

What symptoms develop during a seizure?

Many people associate seizures with losing consciousness and having body-wide muscle contractions. But there are many types of seizures that cause a range of symptoms. You can have such mild symptoms that no one notices you had a seizure.

Seizure symptoms include:

  • Weak or limp muscles
  • Tense or rigid muscles
  • Brief muscle twitches
  • Convulsions (whole-body spasms)
  • Repetitive movements
  • Blanking out or staring into space
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Blurry vision or seeing flashes of light
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Inability to hear or talk
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Feeling confused
  • Out-of-body sensations 

Most seizures last from 30 seconds to two minutes. Afterward, you may recover immediately, or it could take hours before you feel back to normal. 

How do neurologists diagnose seizures?

Your Tidewater Neurology provider begins by learning about your symptoms and completing a comprehensive physical exam and neurological evaluation. They order blood tests and may perform a lumbar puncture to get a sample of your cerebrospinal fluid to rule out an infection.

You also have an in-office electroencephalogram (EEG). An EEG shows brainwave patterns associated with seizures and may target the area in your brain where the seizure began.

Depending on your EEG results, your provider may order additional tests such as an MRI or CT scan that reveal problems in your brain.

How are seizures treated?

In addition to treating any underlying medical conditions, your provider prescribes medication that prevents future seizures. If you still have seizures despite trying several medications, they may recommend:

  • Ketogenic diet
  • Vagus nerve stimulation
  • Deep brain stimulation
  • Surgery

During surgery, your provider removes or destroys a small area that triggers your seizures, or they may cut the connections between nerves.

If you suffered a seizure, you need medical care and comprehensive treatment from the skilled team at Tidewater Neurology. Call or book online today.