Chapter

The causes of epilepsy

Simon Shorvon

in Epilepsy

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780199560042
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199607365 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780199560042.003.0003

Series: Oxford Neurology Library

The causes of epilepsy

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• The cause of epilepsy is often multifactorial. In many cases, epilepsy is the result of a complex interaction of genetic and environmental factors. • Most diseases affecting the cerebral grey matter can result in epilepsy. • Approximately 10%–30% of all epilepsies are likely to have a predominantly genetic cause, although many genes are probably involved. In a small number of cases, a single genetic cause can be identified. • Congenital causes account for approximately 10% of cases. • The commonest acquired causes of epilepsy are vascular, tumoural, post-traumatic, or post-infectious. Hippocampal sclerosis is a cause of epilepsy in approximately 5%–10% of cases. • In approximately 30% of cases, no cause can be identified—these cases are referred to as ‘cryptogenic epilepsy’ .

Chapter.  6166 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Neurology

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