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Partial (focal) seizure

  • Definition

    All seizures are caused by abnormal electrical disturbances in the brain. Partial (focal) seizures occur when this electrical activity remains in a limited area of the brain. The seizures may sometimes turn into generalized seizures, which affect the whole brain. This is called secondary generalization.

    Partial seizures can be further characterized as:

    • Simple -- not affecting awareness or memory
    • Complex -- affecting awareness or memory of events before, during, and immediately after the seizure, and affecting behavior

    For more information, see:

    • Epilepsy
    • Seizures
    • Generalized tonic clonic seizure (grand mal seizure)
    • Petit mal seizure

    Alternative Names

    Focal seizure; Jacksonian seizure; Seizure - partial (focal); Temporal lobe seizure