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Epilepsy – Febrile Seizure

October 12, 2021


Many people in their early childhood have what’s called febrile seizures. These are short, convulsive seizures that involve shaking of the body that occur in conjunction with the child having usually a high fever from a viral or bacterial infection. Now, the simple sort of typical febrile seizures do not correlate with risk of developing epilepsy later in life. However, unusual febrile seizures, meaning those that last a long time, let’s say over 20 or 30 minutes, or that are associated with asymmetric movements of the body where one half of the body is moving or jerking much more than the other half during the seizure, or when the child has an abnormal neurological examination, are associated with an increased risk of developing epilepsy later in life. So a child may have one or two or a handful of these unusual or what we call complicated febrile seizures early in life, and then 10 years or even 20 years later may develop epilepsy.

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