Like most people, you likely have some idea what a seizure is. You may even know someone who suffers from seizures on a regular basis, or you have actually witnessed someone having a seizure. If you, or someone you love, suffer from seizures you should have more than a basic idea what they are. Furthermore, you should know what often causes seizures and what can be done to protect you, or your loved one, during a seizure as well as what can be done to prevent having a seizure.
The simplest explanation for a seizure is a sudden surge of electrical activity, caused by complex chemical changes in the nerve cells found within the brain. More specifically, the Epilepsy Foundation explains seizures as follows:
“Brain cells either excite or inhibit (stop) other brain cells from sending messages. Usually there is a balance of cells that excite and those that can stop these messages. However, when a seizure occurs, there may be too much or too little activity, causing an imbalance between exciting and stopping activity. The chemical changes can lead to surges of electrical activity that cause seizures.’
Seizures are broadly divided into general, primary seizures and partial seizures. Primary generalized seizures, which are more likely to be hereditary, begin with a widespread electrical discharge that involves both sides of the brain at once. A partial seizure, on the other hand, begins with an electrical discharge in only part of the brain.
While many seizures are the result of epilepsy, that is not true of all seizures. In fact, most people are unaware that injures, specifically injuries to the head, can often cause seizures. Because a head injury typically affects the brain, it can trigger a seizure. If the brain is seriously injured to the point where swelling occurred, intracranial hemorrhaging can result. This, in turn, can impact the electrical activity in the brain and cause a seizure.
Finally, it is important to be able to recognize a possible seizure. Most people envision a grand mal seizure when they think of a seizure. A grand mal seizure typically involves shaking, convulsions, muscle rigidity, and a loss of consciousness. Not all seizure, however, produce such dramatic symptoms. Partial seizures may only involve sporadic jerking movements, muscle stiffness, loss of muscle tone, or loss of consciousness for a very brief period of time.
A seizure can cause serious, permanent damage to the brain. At its worst, a seizure can even be life threatening. The serious nature of seizures, coupled with the difficulty in diagnosing a seizure, make it extremely important to always take the victim of an accident to the hospital immediately for an evaluation, particularly if the victim suffered a head injury.
If you have additional questions about seizures, or how to proceed if you are the victim of an accident wherein another party caused, or contributed to, your injuries, contact the Louisiana personal injury attorneys at Broussard & Hart, LLC by calling 337-439-2450 to schedule your appointment today.