About the book
A seizure is a manifestation of an abnormal, hypersynchronous discharge of a population of cortical neurons, that may produce subjective symptoms or objective signs, in which case it is a clinical seizure. Clinical seizures are usually classified according to the International Classification of Epileptic Seizures by International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) which is the best one currently available. This classification introduces different levels of classification with respect to the state of consciousness, the evolution to a bilateral tonic-clonic seizure, the inclusion of the first semiological seizure element in the classification, and a new operationalization of the state of consciousness. The incidence of new-onset seizures in the general population is approximately 80 per 100,000 per year; approximately 60% of these patients will have epilepsy, a tendency toward recurrent unprovoked seizures. The diagnosis of a particular seizure type, and of a specific type of epileptic syndrome, directs the clinical diagnosis of these patients and their initial therapy.
In the last two decades, enormous advances in understanding of epilepsy have occurred. Techniques such as electroencephalography, neuroimaging, neurosurgery and neuropsychology, are giving us a better understanding of the pathogenesis of epilepsy. Additionally, major developments are taking place in the laboratories of scientists studying genetics, embryogenesis, neuropathology, neurochemistry and pharmacology. These advances provide a much better understanding of why patients develop epilepsy, and improving the way in which epileptic patients are cared.
This book presents current information on various etiologies of epilepsy, their physiopathology, their diagnostic assessment, and the bases of their pharmacological or surgical treatments.