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Devinsky O; Kelley K; Porter RJ; Theodore WH
"Clinical and electroencephalographic features of simple partial seizures"
Neurology 1988 Sep; 38(9):1347-1352
The clinical and electroencephalographic features of 87 simple partial seizures in 14 patients were studied with video-EEG telemetry. The patients were able to respond to verbal stimuli during all seizures and, later, could clearly recall ictal events. To determine whether the EEG changes in simple partial seizures could be reliably observed, a reader blindly reviewed four EEGs of equal duration for each seizure. These EEGs consisted of one ictal and three nonictal recordings obtained at predetermined times before the seizure. There were 27 motor seizures (mean duration, 86 seconds; range, 2 to 250 seconds), all involving clonic movements of the head and/or upper extremities; 8 (30%) of these had a sensory component (pain in 6, paresthesia in 2). An EEG change, usually localized spikes or sharp waves over the contralateral or both rolandic regions, was identifiable in nine (33%) of the motor seizures. The 60 nonmotor seizures (mean duration, 63 seconds; range, 8 to 375 seconds) involved a variety of symptoms, including somatosensory/special sensory (3 seizures), autonomic (26 seizures), cognitive (1 seizure), affective (14 seizures), and mixed, or more than one category of nonmotor symptoms (16 seizures). In only nine (15%) of the nonmotor seizures was there an ictal EEG change, usually localized spikes or paroxysmal theta activity over the temporal region. Overall, among the 87 simple partial seizures, only 18 (21%) revealed ictal EEG changes. Thus, a normal EEG is common during simple partial seizures and does not exclude the diagnosis

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