Another question about simple partials seizures?

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nonsensewords
New Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/11/2014 8:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey all,

So I've had migraines for about a decade, and they used to be just nasty headaches and some puking, photosensitivity, the usual. In the last couple of years I've been getting things that I associated with migraine auras, but increasingly they didn't seem to be attached to a headache at all. I went to a neurologist about six months ago and he said, "Hmm, sounds like simple partial seizures, let's do an EEG." It was like a 4 hour EEG or something, didn't pick anything up, he suggested one of the longer ones, but I decided until I have a complex seizure of some sort I'm probably good. Just for reference, the sort of things I was experiencing were feelings like I'd suddenly dropped a few feet when standing totally still, intense feelings like being inside a dream--total surreality of my surroundings, intense deja vu, and occasionally sort of firecracker lights or big circles in my upper right left of vision. They seemed like pretty benign, fairly textbook things that happen during a simple seizure. But I also wasn't really sure they weren't weird migraine stuff.

Then today I could sort of tell that I was getting a migraine. I was talking to a friend on gmail chat, and was lamenting my life situation a bit, and she gave me some advice that I suddenly felt was so condescending, and after leaving the conversation I was suddenly incredibly depressed. I had started to clean my kitchen, but I was suddenly SO depressed that I genuinely very briefly but very earnestly thought about suicide and then had to lie down because I just couldn't stand up any longer. And then, just as suddenly as I'd gotten depressed, it completely passed. This all took 10-15 minutes, which based on everything I've read seems long for a simple partial. Then I got the migraine.

I've never had something like this happen before, and my first thought was--did I just have a seizure? It was SUCH intense depression. I'm not depressed, and I'm definitely not suicidal. My life situation sucks a bit, but I have loads of options. I sort of don't know what to think about this. It was really frightening. It didn't feel like it was totally out of the blue, because my friend DID upset me a little, but it was completely out of all proportion to what she'd said.

I scanned the thread about what simple partials are like, but I didn't see anything like this. Is this… a thing? Any advice would be much appreciated.

--davey

Post Edited (nonsensewords) : 5/11/2014 9:03:02 PM (GMT-6)


JungRulz
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2014
Total Posts : 394
   Posted 5/14/2014 7:48 PM (GMT -6)   
My neurologist says that migraines and seizures are sometimes closely related. I had Temporal Lobe Epilepsy for more than 15 years before it was correctly diagnosed and treated (and all the visual migraines stopped then as well). During that time, I had very frequent visual (ocular) migraines with no headache. My seizures were comprised of Deja Vu, very strong, followed by memory loss for names and phone numbers and a kind of sorrowful feeling (depression of sorts) as the seizure neared the end of its cycle. I'd call my wife to tell her another "episode" started, which necessitated me using the a phone, and of course dialing a number. I'd manage to dial the correct number, but did not have the confidence that the number I dialed was correct. Despite the loss of names and numbers, if I had an episode while driving, I'd have no trouble navigating or operating the car (at the time I didn't know they were seizures).

If you have seizures, you owe it to yourself, and others, to get a correct diagnosis, especially if you operate machinery, such as a car, motorcycle, or do so at work, since a loss of cognition or consciousness can be dangerous to yourself or others. My seizures deteriorated and I was experiencing aphasia (stopped talking in the middle of a sentence without cause), anesthesia of the throat, and forced unexpected swallowing.

But migraines can also cause cognitive issues.

migraine.com/blog/cognitive-dysfunction-migraine/

migraine.com/blog/migraine-symptoms-transient-aphasia/

Although my seizures had deteriorated and would likely have been diagnosed by more common means, I wore a 24 hour EEG and was sent home wearing it, my doctor confirmed the diagnosis after reviewing the information.

Since there may be other reasons for your symptoms other than migraines and seizures, it would be best to work with your doctor and/or neurologist to discover the cause.

Hope this is of some help.

nonsensewords
New Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/16/2014 8:39 PM (GMT -6)   
That is helpful, thanks. Although if you don't mind my asking--how long were these episodes you had? As I mentioned above, this lasted quite a while, and as far as I've read it seems like simple partials are only supposed to last a couple minutes. I suppose there's probably quite a bit of variation really...

And yeah, you're absolutely right and I'm a bit ashamed that I hadn't considered that if I really am having seizures it might make me a danger to other people. What I'm experiencing is generally pretty benign at the moment, but who knows what might happen if they continue? Thanks for pointing that out. The cost is sort of prohibitive, unfortunately, but hey--maybe I'll finally meet my deductible...

Thanks again.

JungRulz
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2014
Total Posts : 394
   Posted 5/17/2014 12:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Episodes would last about 15 to 20 minutes, from the first pangs of Deja Vu, which I hated, because I knew what was to come, to the feeling of restored memories.

The visual (ocular) migraines would last 45 minutes.

My concern extends to you equally, even if you didn't hit anyone with a vehicle, you may harm yourself.

Mine escalated, I remember being in a trade school when one of the newer episodes came over me, I slammed my chair back against the wall, with me in it, inadvertently, and the instructor asked if I was OK. I screamed back "no I'm not OK." He didn't say anything else. I even had an auditory hallucination at that point in time, it was the Sega T.V. Game ditty.

I went to my neurologist, he kept telling me nothing was wrong based on a recent MRI. I stormed out and scheduled to see another Neurologist. I don't think I had seen him yet, but had more episodes, so I called the office after-hours. He called me back from a party somewhere, listened to my symptoms, said it sounded like seizures, and arranged for a 24 Hour EEG the following day. The rest is history. Dilantin (Phenytoin) almost instantly stopped 15 years of misery.

I never had a migraine during a seizure and visa versa, so I believe they were two separate entities, but the migraines stopped as soon as I started to take Phenytoin.

The firecracker of lights and big circle you describe sound characteristic of what I saw, which is known as a scintillating scotoma, and that is related to migraines.

nonsensewords
New Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/18/2014 2:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks again. It's encouraging to hear that you found something that stopped the migraines too, because I haven't had any luck with prophylactics so far.

It's funny, because I had one doctor tell me that what I was experiencing did not sound like scintillating scotoma (which I've never had in the more classic forms--I did once have a terrifying aura that was pretty similar to what you were describing with the phone numbers, except in my case I was reading a book at the time and I suddenly couldn't make out individual letters or words, but I knew what the book said. Very strange), and then one who did.

I guess sort of bottom line is that migraines and epilepsy are weird and complicated and vaguely connected, and I should see a neurologist again. Thanks again for your help.
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