How long does a seizure last?
A seizure typically causes noticeable symptoms that only last for a few seconds, but it is not uncommon for a seizure to last for minutes or longer. Sometimes, seizures continue for a long period of time and rarely, a seizure may last for so long that the only way to stop it is by using urgent anti-seizure medication.
How does a seizure start?
A seizure may be preceded by some symptoms that start before the actual seizure begins. These symptoms are typically referred to as a seizure prodrome or a seizure aura. The symptoms of a seizure prodrome or aura can include dizziness, blurred vision, confusion, sleepiness or unusual sensations.
People who have a condition called epilepsy, which is characterized by recurrent seizures, can often recognize their own seizure aura and may be able to stop a seizure from happening by taking medicine when they sense an aura.
What happens after a seizure?
After a seizure, the person who has experienced the convulsion may feel extremely tired or confused. Physically, bruising or cuts may be present if the seizure was a major generalized tonic-clonic seizure with uncontrollable movements that caused injuries. A person may also be wet or soiled if the seizure caused a loss of bowel or bladder control.
Jetté N, Wiebe S. Initial Evaluation of the Patient with Suspected Epilepsy, Neurol Clin. 2016 May;34(2):339-50