Epilepsy (sometimes referred to as a seizure disorder) is a common chronic neurological condition that is characterized by recurrent unprovoked epileptic seizures.
These seizures are transient signs and/or symptoms due to abnormal excessive or synchronous neuronal activity in the brain.
It affects approximately 50 million people worldwide.
Epilepsy is usually controlled, but not cured, with medication - although surgery may be considered in difficult cases.
Not all epilepsy syndromes are lifelong, for example some are confined to particular stages of childhood.
Epilepsy is usually treated with medication prescribed by a physician; primary caregivers, neurologists, and neurosurgeons all frequently care for people with epilepsy.
In some cases the implantation of a stimulator of the vagus nerve, or a special diet can be helpful.
Neurosurgical operations for epilepsy can be palliative, reducing the frequency or severity of seizures; or, in some patients, an operation can be curative.