All seizures are caused by abnormal electrical disturbances in the brain. Partial (focal) seizures occur when this electrical activity remains in a limited area of the brain. The seizures may sometimes turn into generalized seizures, which affect the whole brain. This is called secondary generalization.
Partial seizures can be further characterized as:
- Simple — not affecting awareness or memory
- Complex — affecting awareness or memory of events before, during, and immediately after the seizure, and affecting behavior
For more information, see:
- Generalized tonic clonic seizure (grand mal seizure)
- Petit mal seizure
Pictures & ImagesCentral nervous system and peripheral nervous system
The central nervous system is comprised of the brain and spinal cord. The peripheral nervous system includes all peripheral nerves.
Review Date : 3/28/2009
Reviewed By : Reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc., and David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Previously reviewed by Daniel B. Hoch, PhD, MD, Assistant Professor of Neurology, Harvard Medical School, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital. (6/19/08)