Epilepsy & associated conditions

There are certain conditions or disorders that may, or may not, accompany epilepsy. These are sometimes known as co-occurring conditions (or co-morbidities).

In the past, it was assumed that many of these conditions occurred as a result of recurrent seizures or medication.

More recent research has shown that some cognitive and psychological conditions may occur before the onset of a child’s seizures. They may also occur simultaneously with, or after, the onset of a child’s epilepsy.

When they do occur, co-occurring conditions vary from child to child and the severity and impact they have on a child’s quality of life will also vary enormously. It is very important that these conditions are recognised early and families seek help and support.

Some of the more common conditions include:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • Educational difficulties
  • Behavioural problems
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Language and communication difficulties
  • Developmental Coordination Disorder (dyspraxia)

NB Young Epilepsy are currently reviewing our information portfolio which will be updated in October 2023.

Also in this section

Epilepsy & contraception

It is important that all teenagers are given information about the effects of AEDs on contraception and pregnancy before they become sexually active

Epilepsy & pregnancy

Some medication can have an effect on the development of the baby so it's important that you discuss planning a pregnancy with your consultant, epilepsy nurse or GP

Causes of epilepsy

The causes of epilepsy generally falls into three groups; genetic, structural/metabolic or unknown

Diagnosing epilepsy

Getting a diagnosis of epilepsy can often take some time. Only until there have been two or more seizures that a diagnosis of epilepsy will be considered

Epilepsy treatment

The main aim of treating epilepsy is to improve the person's quality of life by preventing seizures but also causing minimum side effects

Epilepsy seizures

An epileptic seizure happens because of a disruption of the electrical activity in the brain

Epilepsy syndromes

A syndrome is a group of signs and symptoms which, if they occur together, can suggest a particular condition