The tendency for recurrent seizures can be particular in those suffering epilepsy. Some drugs can be prescribed to assist in controlling these said attacks but in rare cases, surgery may need to be done.
Signs and symptoms of an Epileptic Attack:
- Collapsing to the ground.
- Crying out suddenly.
- Blueish coloured skin.
- Jerking movements or muscular spasms.
- Frothing at the mouth.
- Biting of the tongue.
- Losing control of the bladder or bowel movements.
First Aid for an Epileptic Attack
1. Monitor Lifeline
Follow DRABC. After an attack, if the patient loses consciousness, attempt to resuscitate. Monitor them closely until medical help arrives.
2. Protect the casualty during seizure
Move objects out of the way if a patient is suffering a seizure. Do not restrict their movement or hold them down. Do not place anything in their mouth or attempt to open their mouth during a seizure.
3. Place patient in Recovery Position
Place the patient in the recovery position as soon as the attack subsides.
The recovery position is lying down on a patient’s side with their head and neck supported by an extended arm or a firm pillow that does not block their airway.
The patients arm facing up from the ground should be rested gently in front of their chest, without blocking their airway.
The patient’s leg facing up from the ground should be bent at the knee and positioned down towards the ground to offer stability.
Do not leave a patient in the recovery position unattended.
If the patient falls asleep, do not disturb them, but monitor that they are breathing and they have a pulse until they awake.
4. Manage injuries
If the patient injures themselves during a seizure, administer First Aid and seek medical help. Continue to monitor the patient for signs of life until help arrives.
5. Seek medical help
If the patient is a known epileptic and on medication, and fully recovers after a seizure, encourage them to seek medical attention.
Do not leave them alone until they have fully recovered and leave the scene voluntarily without assistance.
Seek medical help urgently if:
- The seizure lasts for more than five minutes
- Another seizure follows the initial seizure
- The patient has injured themselves during the seizure
- The patient is diabetic
Important: Epilepsy might lead to some complications that impair learning, aspiration pneumonia caused by breathing in of food or saliva into the lungs, permanent brain damage as in the cases of stroke accompanying the attack, and injuries that may be sustained from a fall or in other accidents that happen after an attack. It is important therefore to have support and assistance when needed. Do not drive knowing it’s probable that a seizure may happen. Exercise caution and ensure that medication intakes are never missed as well.
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