E-ISSN 2636-865X
Research Article
Seizure Precipitating Factors in Patients With Epilepsy
1 Bakırköy Dr.Sadi Konuk Training and Research Hospital, Neurology, Istanbul, Turkey  
Neurol Sci Neurophysiol 2016; 33: 102-110

Key Words: Seizure, epilepsy, seizure precipitating factors

Objective: Aim of the study was (a) to estimate the frequency of seizure precipitating factors; (b) to determine the most frequently reported seizure precipitating factors (c) to identify the differences in distribution of these precipitating factors among epilepsy syndromes and (d) to evaluate differences in the frequency of seizure precipitating factors with regard to demographic features, seizure types, epilepsy syndromes, neuroimaging and electroencephalographic findings.


Methods: We retrospectively analyzed patients who were followed up in our epilepsy outpatient clinic between 2011 and 2014. Information about precipitating factors was obtained during the interview or from the medical reports and telephone inquiries.


Results: Of 365 patients, 61% reported at least one seizure precipitating factor. The most frequently reported precipitating factors were stress (30.4%), sleep deprivation (23.6%) and fatigue (16.2%). Patients were divided into 3 groups regarding the classification of epilepsy syndromes; genetic (18.6%), structural-metabolic (39.2%) and unknown (42.2%). Patients with genetic epilepsy seemed to be less sensitive to stress than those with structural-metabolic and unknown epilepsies. Patients who had myoclonic and generalized tonic clonic seizures had greater tendency to report precipitating factors than patients having other types of seizures. Precipitating factors were less reported by patients whose EEG showed nonspecific paroxysmal activity and who had periventricular ischemic-gliotic lesions in neuroimaging modalities.


Conclusion: Awareness of seizure precipitating factors in the clinical management of the patients with epilepsy may significantly reduce seizure frequency and future studies may contribute to the clarification of the relationship between precipitating factors and seizure occurrence.

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