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February 1954

INCIDENCE OF IDIOPATHIC CONVULSIONS IN LATER LIFE

Author Affiliations

ASPINWALL, PA.

From the Neuropsychiatric Service, Veterans Administration Hospital, and the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1954;71(2):181-184. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1954.02320380047005
Abstract

ALL PAPERS dealing with idiopathic convulsive states admit the fact that such seizures may have their onset in adult life, and every physician treating any appreciable number of such patients will realize that the initial development of idiopathic convulsions in late life is not rare. However, certain traditional statistics have been preserved in almost all textbooks covering the subject, with little change in the past 60 years. These figures represent the usual medical school teaching and are firmly rooted in the minds of most of us. Grinker1 states:

Chronic epilepsy probably begins with greatest frequency in the first years of life. There is then a fall in the number of cases beginning from the ages 1 to 5, an increase from the 4th to the 7th years, a decline in the 8th and 9th years and a steady increase from 12 to 15 years.

This author cited Turner, who

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