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please please help me : (

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Old 09-30-2007, 03:14 PM   #1
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 2
blanked_mind HB User
Unhappy please please help me : (

Dear everyone,

I have a witnessed tonic-chronic seizure about 2 months ago. And some possibilities of unwitessed ones before, as i found myself lying on the ground when i woke up with the same symptoms afterall.

I'm very very worried. Because sometimes throughout the night while i'm trying to sleep, i suddenly found myself not willing to breath or spreak..or even move. My whole body is intensed & tightened up, and i felt like my blood is rushing back to my head very very rapidly. . These episodes last for at least 20 to 30 secs, and they always happen one followed by the other for at least three times. After these episodes, i always found myself sweating very badly, very rapid heartbeat, breathing very quickly(as i couldnt breathe during the episode) and very very sore muscles and joints. And a very bad headache. I am very worried, as i dont know if this is just what people called a "panic attack" or a kind of seizure. Cause i went to a seizure seminar apparently, and they said that there is a chance that you can die of seizure due to shortness of breath. And is there any ways that i can avoid this?

My GP has directed me to see a neurologist. I had an EEG and MRI done. They both show no significance to Epilepsy. But in his letter to me, he mentioned that there are some white foci found showing increased T1 hyperintensities. I would like to ask what are the possibilities of having increased T1 hyperintensities?

For my family medical history, both of my grandmother have heart disease. One died of heart disease and the other died of stroke. My grandfather was died of liver cancer. And my other grandfather has diabetes. My father has high blood pressure and asthma. For myself, i have asthma too. Hope that this information will help.

Thank you so much for your kind attention.
Your help is very much appreciated.

With regards,

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Old 09-30-2007, 05:14 PM   #2
Senior Veteran
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: north of somewhere nice
Posts: 1,477
neurowreck HB User
Re: please please help me : (

OK.....first of all, panic attacks aren't seizures, although you can have panic attacks feeling like you're going to have a seizure, and bring one on by reducing the oxygen to your brain....the first thing you need to do when you feel funky is breathe ! Even use a paper lunch sack (they still sell them!!) if you have to.

If you're aware of an episode that resembles a generalized seizure, it isn't. Generalized seizures effect the brain in such a way that both sides of the brain are seizing at the same time, and consciousness is shot. You can have panic attacks that cause rigid muscles from build up of various chemicals in your blood from abnormal breathing. Even if you passed out from that, it more than likely would just stop the panic attack, and not kill you. You have to have thought to have panic.

I've had situations where I thought I was going to pass out (after surgery, driving- dumb, dumb, dumb- not a major surgery, but involved general anesthesia and a pint of blood lost), and I literally talked myself back home (only a block and a half away). I talked out loud, like a lunatic, and calmly told myself I'd be ok, home was close, I could lie down soon, I was going to stay awake, etc, and I got there. Scared the snot out of me, but I got there.

Talk to yourself in productive phrases, out loud, and get the tests done. If you have epilepsy, you have it, but you don't need to panic- there are a lot of things that can be done to help- let the doc work you up first

Dying of shortness of breath probably refers to sleep apnea, which is a totally different deal- and can cause seizures from lack of oxygen, but the person often isn't aware of the actual lapse in breathing. Ask the doc about the T1 hyperintensities. Everybody has different stuff. The big thing is calm down until you get your tests done- worrying won't fix them or help you. Stress makes everything worse, so don't borrow trouble Keep coming back and talking with folks here- lots of support

Last edited by neurowreck; 09-30-2007 at 05:18 PM. Reason: addition

Old 10-01-2007, 01:39 AM   #3
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Porterville, CA, USA
Posts: 83
porterville HB User
Re: please please help me : (

Hi Everyone

I have epilepsy. tonic/clonic used to be called grand mals. They changed the names on us. The reason they changed the name is because it is not always over all of the brain. It can be on the Temporal Lobe, like one of my seizures are.

Take a journal of your seizures, your breathing problems and other problems and the date. The next time you have these breathing problems, go to the ER immediately.

As for the tests not showing up epilepsy, they only show up seizures if you are having a seizure during the test. I am 64 and I have had epilepsy since I was 6 years old.

Love Ruth

Old 10-01-2007, 06:04 AM   #4
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Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: north of somewhere nice
Posts: 1,477
neurowreck HB User
Re: please please help me : (

True- they changed the terminology to differentiate whether or not one or both sides of the brain were likely to be involved, as per the symptoms (and any EEG info they could get, which we all know doesn't always happen).

Partial seizures involve one side of the brain-
-simple partials retain consciousness
-complex partials alter or 'lose' conscious awareness, although the person may carry on with meaningless activity

Generalized seizures include
Absence (used to be petit mal) or staring spells, which can happen hundreds of times a day, and the person is not aware of the episode but may be aware of lost time
Generalized motor seizures include tonic clonic seizures (the 'old' grand mals, and what people think of as seizures, which is actually odd, since most people with seizures have partials) and can be quite dramatic.

There are over a hundred types of seizure syndromes (genetic and acquired), and seizure symptoms can include so many things, all depending on where they start in the brain.

Status epilepticus can occur in generalized and partial seizures, even though most people only think that it happens in 'grand mal' seizures. Both can be life threatening.

Non-epileptic seizures (there are a bunch of names for these- used to be primarily called pseudoseizures, which implied faking or malingering, but they found out that the percentages of this were actually very small; about 40% of those with documented epilepsy also have non-epileptic events as well, and it's hard to tell the difference...needs a lot more research. Clues include longer than 'normal' seizure, not responding to seizure meds (which can happen in true seizures- but most people with seizures do respond to IV meds during ER or emergency assistance- non-epileptic events often do not), excessive pelvic thrusting (although this can also occure in frontal lobe syndromes), only happening around others, seizure gets 'worse' if others try to hold head to protect them, etc. There often is a psychological reason, but these are not intentional, attention seeking behaviors- something has gone on in the persons' life, and they need psychological assistance- not seizure meds (after seizure testing done, and ruled out). These folks have often been treated very cruelly, and need compassion, but not enabling. It's not their fault, but getting well by working on whatever issues they have is their responsibility.

Just stuff I've studied from neuro textbooks for the heck of it- wanted to learn what I could.

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