|discharging of neurons in the brain. There are two major classifications for seizures, and their symptoms are dependent on the area of the brain in wch they originate. The first group, known as generalized seizures, comprises absence and tonic-clonic seizures wle the second group, focal seizures, consists of simple, complex, and secondary generalized seizures. Absence seizures (petit-mal) is|
Seizure disorders can negatively impact an individual’s life and are associated with gh morbidity and mortality rates if not well-controlled. Ts neurological condition affects anyone regardless of age, race, social class, etc. According to Johnson (2018), a seizure is a sudden alteration in neurological function due to abnormal and excessive discharging of neurons in the brain. There are two major classifications for seizures, and their symptoms are dependent on the area of the brain in wch they originate. The first group, known as generalized seizures, comprises absence and tonic-clonic seizures wle the second group, focal seizures, consists of simple, complex, and secondary generalized seizures. Absence seizures (petit-mal) is a sudden and brief lapse in one’s consciousness and lasts approximately 5-30 seconds (Barone et al., 2020). Interestingly enough, cldren are more susceptible to these types of seizures and may outgrow them later in life (Barone et al., 2020). Unlike other seizures, absence seizures do not have a postictal phase due to their short duration and symptomology: smacking one’s lips, fluttering of the eyes, chewing movements, or rubbing fingers together (Crunelli et al., 2020). Tonic-clonic seizures (grand-mal) involve the loss of consciousness and may include prodromal symptoms that occur hours to days prior to seizure onset (Beniczky et al., 2020). During ts timeframe, individuals can exbit confusion, anxiety, irritability, anger, headache, confusion, or other mood disturbances (Beniczky et al., 2020). Wle the convulsion occurs, patients may cry or fall to the ground as a direct effect of bilateral, symmetrical contractions to muscles, as well as bite their tongue and/or have urinary incontinence (Arcangelo et al., 2022). On the other hand, simple focal seizures (partial) occur wle a person is awake and alert and can sometimes progress to a generalized tonic-clonic seizure. People often experience various sensory and autonomic symptoms and emotional changes, and even describe different smells or tastes before the seizures begin (Wang et al., 2017). Antiepileptic medications are used to prevent future seizures from occurring; however, their undesired side effects that could make compliance an issue for patients. More often than not, individuals taking these medications may experience fatigue, confusion, poor coordination or balance, and blurry vision (Ayalew & Muche, 2018). Valproic Acid (Divalproex/Depakote) can be used as monotherapy, and adjunctive therapy for people who have seizure disorders (specifically generalized, focal, and absence) and is considered first-line treatment in these cases (Arcangelo et al., 2022). Although it is an excellent choice for the management of ts condition, valproic acid has several adverse effects, including a black box warning that warrants close monitoring in patients with a story of liver disease. Hepatotoxicity may result in addition to other side effects such as GI upset, alopecia, behavioral changes, weight gain, pancreatitis, and thrombocytopenia (Arcangelo et al., 2022). Moreover, women of cldbearing age should not take ts medication due to the teratogenic risks that may ensue after its use (Arcangelo et al., 2022). Patients should receive education that routine monitoring of valproic acid levels in the blood is required to maintain a therapeutic level.