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Epilepsy/Is This Epilepsy or not?


I'm 20 years old and for almost my whole life I have had infrequent jerks/flinches. They used to be one every couple of months but have increased to weekly/daily now. They are not aggressive and are fairly mild. I think them really hard to describe. They last for less than a second. My best attempt at a description is for example: when I was twirling my hair, my hands sort of stayed in that position and shook/flinched slightly. They are do mild that I've been sitting next to people and they haven't noticed before. As I have had them my whole life is it likely to be Epilepsy or not? If I did have mild Epilepsy would I still be able to drink and get drunk? Does the up in frequency suggest I am going to have a Seizure?

Thank You .

Hello Laura,
It is almost impossible to tell if an individual has a seizure disorder just by description because seizure disorders or epilepsy can take many different forms.
You will require at least an EEG.
With true epilepsy, there is always an abnormality in brain waves and EEG testing is the first step to diagnosis as it is a recording of brain waves.
Sometimes it is necessary to record an EEG while the "jerking" is happening.  In that situation, a prolonged EEG can be done at home that runs for a few days.
Laura - do go for a consultation to a neurologist to have this checked out.
Good luck,


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Sophia, R.N., M.S.


Almost any questions pertaining to epilepsy, seizures, pseudo-seizures, testing for epilepsy, medications, surgery. Self-care, appropriate emergency measures, medication side-effects, drug interactions etc.


Working as an epilepsy nurse clinican in a large comprehensive epilepsy center for 15 years. Previous employment with a major pharmaceutical company working in pharmaceutical research. Before that - varied experience in nursing.

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