Graphic by Brittany.lee2 [CC BY-SA 4.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Status Epilepticus is a prolonged seizure that lasts more than five minutes or repeats without a full recovery between seizures. In the event of Status Epilepticus, call an ambulance, as it is a life-threatening emergency. It can occur with any of the seizure types.

First Aid for Status Epilepticus

If you have ongoing seizures let the people around you know that you have epilepsy. Then you can tell them the correct way to respond to your seizures. Timing of the seizure is crucial in determining if an ambulance needs to be called. Follow correct seizure first aid procedures. Then, if the seizure does not end on its own, call an ambulance so medical intervention can be provided.

Most seizures last under 5 minutes and are not medical emergencies except status epilepticus.

Patients who are susceptible to lengthy or repeated seizures can be treated with emergency medication given at home. Discuss with your physician if you or your family member would be helped by an additional “rescue” medication. It is prescribed  by a neurologist. Ativan is commonly used for this purpose.

Status Epilepticus may result when anticonvulsant drugs are suddenly stopped.

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