Trying to have a seizure

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KrisMuro
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 1/13/2005 9:37 PM (GMT -7)   
I am an instructional assistant in a special ed class and we have a boy who is 7 who is diagnosed mentally retarded and also has seizures. What is strange about him is that he trys to have seizures. He will look at patterns, his hands, lines, ears, and focus in on them and have a seizure. They only last about 5-10 seconds but if we try to interrupt them he becomes very aggressive. They are not very big either, he will space out for a minute and then its done and this a continuous thing throughout the day. Any advice or has anyone experienced anything like this?

kayakmom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 585
   Posted 1/14/2005 7:30 AM (GMT -7)   
I wonder if he is truly trying to have one, or if he cannot stop looking at the patterns and it causes one? The brain is already starting the seizure before you see any outward sign, that could be why you see the aggression if you try to stop things. His brain may already be misfiring and aggression can happen with some seizure types.


It must be very difficult to teach seeing this go on all day.

DBG
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2004
Total Posts : 235
   Posted 1/14/2005 3:08 PM (GMT -7)   

I agree that it would be odd that he'd be trying to have a sz since cognitively he doesn't seem that he'd understand to do so.  Alot of people that have sz's also can become aggressive during the sz which may explain his reaction when you try and interrupt the sz. 

Christine


epileptic_Cajun
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 1/15/2005 1:08 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi all,

Have you ever thought of the fact that since he is retarded, that he may be doing this and other things to get attention. I have been around alot of children and adults who do this.

He may or may not be having seizures. Ginny is right with the brain already misfiring before you can see anything.

But, also it sounds more like typical NES to me. I worked my clinical rotations in the EMU, and did see this sort of thing going on.

Agressiveness during a seizure will only come if someone tries to restrain them--sitting on them, straddling them, cornering them, etc.

Violence and epilepsy are two seperate issues and do not go together. The disorder called IED or Intermittent Explosive Disorder can occur in all ages and all IQ fields.

The violence is outrightly directed at another individiual or thing. They are VERY hostile and aggressive and angry.

To see such violence or aggression during a seizure is unheard of.

Certain seizure types can easily cause irratic behavior that is related to epilepsy, but not during the seizure, unless it is a partial of some sort.

He sounds like he has some type of reflex epilepsy, if he has any epilepsy, because you stated he looked at different patterns. Ears are not one that is heard of, that can't trigger a seizure, fingers can't, stripes, lines, lights, color patterns, and alternating light and dark can trigger seizures, so he has already messed up with what he chose to "look" at.

Don't try to inturrupt anyone's seizure, because it can't be stopped once it has begun.

If he has this much of a mental deficit, he won't know about how to trigger seizures, so that is what tipped me off as to them probably being done for attention, and are probably NES in nature.

What meds does he take, if any, for them??

You need to get with his parents have a conference call with them, and his doc and get some more testing done, like an EEG to start with. That way things can begin to be ruled out, and he may not even have a seizure disorder, other than one that needs to be taken care of by a physchiatrist.

Good Luck,

Nancy
31 years old--born with epilepsy--undiagnosed for over 25 years. Suffered bad abuse by dad causing repeated head injuries, 3 brain infections, 4 concussions, and shingles on the brain.

Initially diagnosed last April, and it was confirmed this March after a 9-day stay in the EMU.

Diagnosed with a sub-type of TLE called Mesial Temporal Lobe Epilepsy Syndrome with Amygdala-Hippocampal seizures.

I have epileptic aura, Simple Partial, Complex Partial and Secondarily Generalized Tonic-Clonic seizures (nocturnal), and a reflex epilepsy as well with Absence and Myoclonic seizures. Myoclonics do occur as regular seizures in me, not just as a result of photic responses.

I failed 7 other drugs.

I take Depakote-1000 mgs and Neurontin--3600 mgs

--TAKE WHAT YOU CAN DO AND DO YOUR BEST WITH IT!!!!


Emily'sMom
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 1/15/2005 3:56 PM (GMT -7)   
It seems most likely to me that his seizure has already begun by the time he is seen staring at something- not that he is trying to have a seizure.  Aggression is VERY possible during a seizure.  It can be part of the seizure itself (i.e. limbic seizures) or it can be an involuntary response when the person is restrained or touched during a seizure. 
 
I would be very hesitant to assume it's a behavioral disorder, NES, or some kind of "attention seeking" problem if he already is known to have epilepsy, especially given the fact that he may not have the cognitive ability to even attempt such a thing.
 
Talking to the parents is a good idea- find out how this boy's seizures present at other times.  Are they always manifested by brief staring spells?  If so, what is being seen at school may well be part of his normal seizure pattern.  Given the frequency he may need a change in his medication as well, so it's good for the parents to know that this is happening so often...
 
 

epileptic_Cajun
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 1/15/2005 7:42 PM (GMT -7)   
These are direct quotes out of one of my neurology textbooks, from med school.

On violent behavior and epilepsy: Attempts to restrain a patient who has clouded sensorium during or after a TC or CPS may result in VERY defensive and aggressive behavior. Well-organized, unprovoked, directed acts of violence are a RARELY, IF EVER HREAD OF manifestation of epilepsy. A person who is having ANY kind of seizure can NOT control his actions and is therefore NOT capable of carrying out violent behavior of any kind or physical attacks on someone or something.

On NES versus seizures: NES are deliberate, willed, acts to gain a desired end, usually attention from others. Prisoners, PERSONS WITH A LIMITED INTELLIGENCE, and persons with a history of physical or sexual abuse use NES as a "cry for help". NES does NOT produce ANY electrical activity during a so-called "seizure". EEGs remain normal. People with NES DON'T respond to drug therapy, either.

Don't think that he can't will himself into a seizure, or pretend to have one. These people of limited mental status can be QUITE CLEVER. You would be amazed at what some of them can accomplish. Don't assume that just because he has a lower intelligence than us, that he can't do something like that. I knew someone in the last state I was in who went to my church who did this. He had the mentality of a 15 year-old, and other mental problems, and was really 31 years old, and faked all kinds of Grand Mal seizures. Didn't respond to ANY meds, had normal results on EVERY test they did on him, had EEGs, VEEGs with no seizures that showed up on the monitor, and when you have a TC, it shows high voltage generalized garbage that is all over the monitor, it can't be missed.

Also it was mentioned that his seizures were 1-2 seconds, but true Absence seizures last from 10-30 seconds--give or take.

Absence seizures are NOT limbic seizures. Limbic seizures come from the occipital lobe, and are partial in nature. From what was described, he is making like Absence.

Again, a meeting between parents, teacher, and neuro are highly recommended.

Meds he is on, dosages, his treatment plan, past and current medical histories, EEGs, MRIs, CTs, PETs, blood levels, accounts from his family and friends at what they see him do when he "seizes", fears of him and his family, family counseling, individual counseling, and behaviour modification all need to be accounted for, during the conference.

If the teacher is not sure of what to do with seizures or epilepsy, they can ask the local EF for info.

The teacher needs to meet with the parents to discuss HOW epilepsy affects the child, what type of seizures they have, and HOW they would like the teacher to handle the seizures when they occur.

Here are some good sites on epilepsy that have good info on them:

www.epilepsy.com (support forums), www.efa.org (support forums), www.neurologychannel.com, www. mayoclinic.com, www.allrefer.com, www. medicinenet.com, www.webmd.com (support forums).

The support forums also have information, they are not just discussion boards.

Nancy

`
31 years old--born with epilepsy--undiagnosed for over 25 years. Suffered bad abuse by dad causing repeated head injuries, 3 brain infections, 4 concussions, and shingles on the brain.

Initially diagnosed last April, and it was confirmed this March after a 9-day stay in the EMU.

Diagnosed with a sub-type of TLE called Mesial Temporal Lobe Epilepsy Syndrome with Amygdala-Hippocampal seizures.

I have epileptic aura, Simple Partial, Complex Partial and Secondarily Generalized Tonic-Clonic seizures (nocturnal), and a reflex epilepsy as well with Absence and Myoclonic seizures. Myoclonics do occur as regular seizures in me, not just as a result of photic responses.

I failed 7 other drugs.

I take Depakote-1000 mgs and Neurontin--3600 mgs

--TAKE WHAT YOU CAN DO AND DO YOUR BEST WITH IT!!!!


kayakmom
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 585
   Posted 1/16/2005 10:08 PM (GMT -7)   
yes, but we do need to be cautious about seeming to diagnose with no knowledge of his specifics and no eeg....he has epilepsy, that was stated. we are not doctors......


People can surely be on medication, for electrical seizures and not have control, as well....


I hope this teacher can find help for this student. I applaud her for seeking answers to help him....

auraboy
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 3/18/2005 8:24 AM (GMT -7)   
hello, i know ur posting about the little boy in your class is a bit old but im new and ive just found it.the idea that a person would induce a sz in themselves is no alien concept to me at all. 
ive had epil 4 ten years or so and have had some bizzare expiriences.not least of all a kind of craving to have a sz! this probably sounds odd to many,as u can tell by some of the replies you`ve had.in some phases of my life ive actually regaurded an episode of a kind of cleansing experience.i have grand mal epilepsy that is not photosensitive so cant induce visually,but ive always had very long pre seizure aura.i know when theres "one in the post" so to speak,and sometimes have found myself welcoming them because they blow away the cobwebs in some respect.
 the kid is retarded.what and how does he feel most of the time? what are his sensations like when hes not having a seizure? i do not think its too extreme to suggest that he actually feels better in seizure state than in normal state! rsvp   

goodwitch46
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 241
   Posted 3/18/2005 10:32 AM (GMT -7)   

I saw this and just had to post too.  I have read that patients that have a seizure disorder have nonepileptic seizures too.  In fact, it is quite common in epilepsy.  I have also read that it not a purposeful act, not "faked"  for attention, although there are episodes that can be, especially in individuals that are under stress. 

 I have even told my own doctor that there are times that I don't feel right and I'm not sure if it is a seizure or not.  I know what a typical seizure is like for me, but sometimes I have times that seem not to "complete" the full episode.    When I had my VEEG, I welcomed the chance to see if what I was experiencing was a NES or not.  Sure enough, I had one that didn't show up on the EEG.  And it was one that didn't "complete" to the full episode.  The doctor said it might have been an aura that the surface EEG didn't pick up.  But I couldn't help suspect it was one of those NES.  The only way to find out is to have a deep electrode EEG.

Bottom line is... we, as caring individuals, WANT to help someone by diagnosing someone.  We see what they go through.  If they are in pain or suffering we want to fix it. Mental retardation and the behavior that results are difficult for normal folks to understand.  That's why special ed teachers have special training, God bless them!, because their behavior isn't what most of us would expect or could handle. 

 Normal people might accept the concept of NES in normal people.  But I don't I know the reason for a mentally handicapped child of 7 to have a NES.  I feel that's for the doctor/psych/therapist to figure out.  We might want to call it a seizure or whatever, but if it's something that's causing a problem, it's best left up to the doctor for diagnosis and treatment.   KrisMuro is right to have concern about his behavior -  any symptoms should be reported to the doctor that are problematic.  But it's trying to make the diagosis that we, as lay people, should stay away from.  Leave that to the doctor.

Glenda


complex partial seizures since 22
lamictal 200mg 2x/d
zonegran 150mg 3/d

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