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Epileptic Disorders - Editor's Choice

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May 2016

Epileptic auras: phenomenology and neurophysiology

A comment from Ghazala Perven and Norman K So
Epileptic Disorders, Vol. 17, No. 4, December 2015, p. 349-62. DOI:10.1684/epd.2015.0786

Epileptic Disorders December 2015

This review discusses the phenomenology, neurophysiology, and localization of epileptic auras with particular emphasis on how auras can manifest as part of an epileptic network. Epileptic auras, as the first clinical symptom of a seizure, may lead us to infer the site of seizure onset. At the same time, auras can also be a result of activation or alteration in an epileptic network. They can be highly specific or ill-defined in symptomatology. They occur as a result of limited seizure activation, allowing access of the neural signal to the conscious brain. An understanding of epileptic auras offers a window into understanding fundamental brain functions, and helps the clinician at the bedside to make appropriate diagnostic and therapeutic choices.

 


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