Cryptogenic epilepsy

Focal cryptogenic epilepsy is a neuropsychiatric pathology, rarely accompanied by generalized seizures, since the area of ​​neuronal excitation (focus) is limited to one hemisphere.

The peculiarity of this variant of the disease is that the convulsive readiness of neurons occurs against the background of a particular pathology. In other words, cryptogenic epilepsy is symptomatic, not primary. Also, a similar diagnosis is made when doctors are unable to establish the exact cause of the epileptic activity of the brain (probably symptomatic cryptogenic).

Convulsions in the event of a seizure are not necessary, the seizure may be in the nature of a absence. Loss of consciousness is also uncommon. 

Due to the peculiarities of the disease, seizures are difficult to correct without treatment of the pathology that caused them.

Reasons for development

The diagnosis of cryptogenic epilepsy is made when, after a full-fledged complex research, the exact cause of the emergence of a focus of degenerated neurons has not been found.

Understanding what cryptogenic focal or generalized epilepsy is, and how this disease occurs in children and adults, is of the first importance. Because until the cause of symptomatic seizures is identified and eliminated, they will recur, despite taking anticonvulsants.

There are a number of assumptions about which conditions contribute to the development of the disease:

  • the consequences of the action of toxic substances;
  • viral infections, in particular – herpes encephalitis;
  • brain tumors;
  • head injuries, even received in a long-term period;
  • sudden changes in temperature;
  • problems during gestation (antenatal).

As a rule, the history of people who are diagnosed with this diagnosis has more than one reason for the onset of epiativity.

Finding and eliminating the source of the disease is difficult, which excludes surgery as a method of treating seizures.

Types and symptoms

Depending on the location and number of foci in the cerebral cortex, the scientific literature describes two types of cryptogenic epilepsy: focal and generalized.


A feature of this type of disease is a clear localization of the place of negative impulses (focus).

According to the features of manifestations and symptoms, we can assume the probable localization of the pathological focus:

  • in the occipital region – there are distinct visions of non-existent people, objects;
  • in the temporal part – the patient is haunted by auditory hallucinations;
  • parietal region – paresthesias are characteristic (disturbances of sensitivity in one or another part of the body;
  • areas of the autonomic nuclei of the brain – sweating, spasms and vasodilation, visual impairment, digestion;
  • pyramidal neurons – uncharacteristic motor activity is observed.

There is also such a phenomenon as cryptogenic focal epilepsy with secondary generalization, in which seizures from focal are transformed into a generalized form with tonic convulsions of the whole body.

All patients are characterized by a change in the emotional component of the personality. Excessive impulsivity appears, a tendency to depression, intellectual abilities decrease. 


This type of cryptogenic epilepsy is common in children, and boys are more likely to suffer. In 7% of cases, babies are given just such a diagnosis. Pathology is considered difficult to cure due to the changeability of symptoms and resistance to classical drugs.

Small convulsions gradually develop into tonic seizures. Seizures are characterized by a combination of several signs: fainting, severe seizures, and absences. Before the main part of the manifestations begins, the child freezes for a short time, completely disconnecting from the world. After he regains consciousness, he does not remember what just happened.

Diagnostics and treatment

The diagnosis of cryptogenic epilepsy, despite the apparent uncertainty, requires clarification of the localization of the focus of epiactivity: frontal partial version, temporal or other.

The doctor conducts a complete thorough examination, examines the history of life, diseases, checks for possible causes of convulsive symptoms.

A patient admitted with suspected cryptogenic epilepsy must undergo:

  • EEG, including daily monitoring of the electroencephalogram;
  • Ultrasound of the brain – echoencephalography;
  • CT and / or MRI.

The source of epiativity is shown by the EEG. And its possible cause is ultrasound, CT, MRI.

After the localization of the focus is established and organic lesions of the cerebral cortex are excluded, complex treatment is prescribed. The goal of therapy is not only to slow down the progression of the disease, but also to suppress seizures.

The drug component remains the leading one. The resistance of some forms of the disease to drugs is eliminated due to the selection of drugs that can affect the nervous system even with this diagnosis.

The main task is to get rid of seizures.

Medicinal component

Drugs of several categories are used:

  • anticonvulsants;
  • psychotropics;
  • nootropics;
  • diuretics.


You can speed up your recovery and achieve tangible positive changes by additionally going through the following procedures:

  • bioresonance therapy, which allows you to normalize the electromagnetic field, reducing the risk of a seizure;
  • vortex fields that normalize the human electromagnetic field;
  • massages;
  • Exercise therapy;
  • reflexology.

The duration of treatment for cryptogenic epilepsy in children and adults is individual and can last for several years. In the future, the need to completely repeat the course is not excluded.

This type of convulsive syndrome can be cured by eliminating the primary cause that affects the brain.


Preventive measures against epilepsy are quite simple – it is necessary to avoid factors contributing to its development. When planning a child, consult your doctor, undergo genetic testing.

For people who have already suffered from seizures, simple rules are recommended to help prevent new seizures:

  • clear daily routine;
  • regular physical activity;
  • adherence to a special diet;
  • lack of severe stress


Cryptogenic focal temporal lobe epilepsy in children has a generally favorable prognosis. This is in the case of timely identification and treatment of the cause of the seizures.

In an advanced stage, without the necessary relief of seizures, the disease impairs intellectual abilities, attention, and concentration. In the worst-case scenario, it leads to personality changes that are no longer possible to reverse.

Particular attention should be paid to the frequency and duration of attacks. The more often and longer they are, the more irreparable damage is done to the brain.

If the seizure lasts more than 5 minutes, you must immediately contact an ambulance, as the patient may receive damage incompatible with life.

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