Precipitating factors in early epilepsy

Avoiding factors that precipitate seizures can be very important. The common factors are listed in Table 1.32 (p. 54). Excess alcohol intake (or its abrupt withdrawal) was a predominant factor in 6% of first seizures in one UK series, and accounted for 27% of first seizures in those between the ages of 30 and 39 years. Sleep deprivation may also be a precipitating factor for seizures in susceptible individuals, and is often a contributory factor in those abusing alcohol. Photosensitivity is encountered mainly in adolescents with idiopathic generalized epilepsy, and is described on p. 56.

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