Generalised seizures

Control of seizures is necessary to prevent ischaemic brain damage, to reduce cerebral oxygen requirements and to reduce intracranial pressure. Where possible correct the cause and give specific treatment. A CT scan may be necessary to identify structural causes. Common causes include:

• Hypoxaemia

• Hypoglycaemia

• Hypocalcaemia

• Space-occupying lesions

• Metabolic and toxic disorders

• Drug withdrawal, e.g. alcohol, benzodiazepines, anticonvulsants

• Infection, especially meningoencephalitis

• Idiopathic epilepsy

Most seizures are self-limiting, requiring no more than protection from injury (coma position, protect head and do not force anything into the mouth).

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