The International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) presents a revised operational classification of seizure types. The purpose of this revision is to recognize that some seizure types can have either a focal or generalized onset, to enable a classification when the onset is unobserved, to include some missing seizure types and to implement a more transparent and understandable nomenclature. Because current knowledge is insufficient to form a scientifically based classification, the 2017 classification is operational (practical) and based on the 1981 classification with the amendments from 2010. The changes include the following: (1) “partial” becomes “focal”; (2) awareness (disturbance of consciousness) is used as a classification criterion of focal seizures; (3) the terms dyscognitive, simple partial, complex partial, psychic and secondarily generalized are eliminated, (4) new focal seizure types include automatisms, behavior arrest, hyperkinetic, autonomic, cognitive, and emotional, (5) epileptic spasms as well as atonic, clonic, myoclonic and tonic seizures can have a focal or generalized onset, (6) focal (seizure with progression) to (a) bilateral tonic-clonic seizure replaces secondarily generalized seizure, (7) new generalized seizure types are absence with eyelid myoclonia, myoclonic absence, myoclonic-atonic, myoclonic-tonic-clonic seizures and (8) seizures of unknown onset may have features that can still be classified. The new classification does not represent a fundamental change but enables greater flexibility and transparency in naming seizure types.
- ILAE commission
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
- Clinical Neurology