In the United States one person in every 500 suffers from epilepsy. In continental Europe the proportion is thought to be somewhat less, though this may be an error due to imperfect statistics; in England the ratio is about the same as in this country.
Epilepsy is one of the oldest diseases of which we have any record. Five centuries before Christ it was described by Greek physicians with much clinical accuracy.
It may be in the infant at birth, or develop immediately after, or its coming may be deferred until man has passed the milestone of life that marks to his credit threescore years and ten.
It comes irrespective of race, environment, occupation, social condition or position; affecting alike the poverty-stricken dweller of the tenement along with the rich who live in palaces.
American statistics show it to be slightly more common in males than in females, while European
SPRATLING WP. EPILEPSY, ITS ETIOLOGY, PATHOLOGY AND TREATMENT BRIEFLY CONSIDERED.. JAMA. 1902;XXXVIII(18):1126–1130. doi:10.1001/jama.1902.62480180004001a
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