Epilepsy, or seizures, refers to an electrical discharge in the brain which results in disturbance of movement, sensation, speech, behaviour or consciousness.

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Common causes of epilepsy include:

  • Brain tumours
  • Hippocampal sclerosis
  • Developmental abnormalities of the brain (for example, cortical dysplasia)
  • Fever (in children)
  • Brain trauma


The diagnosis of epilepsy is best made by an expert neurologist. An EEG, MRI and other diagnostic tests are performed.


Treatment of epilepsy almost always includes anticonvulsant (anti-seizure) medications. In some cases, surgery is required. This is best done by a neurosurgeon with experience in epilepsy surgery.

The surgical treatment of epilepsy generally involves the removal of the lesion (for example tumour) or portion of the brain generating the seizures.