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December 1966

Self-Induced SeizuresClinical and Electroencephalographic Studies

Arch Neurol. 1966;15(6):579-586. doi:10.1001/archneur.1966.00470180019002

PATIENTS who induce seizures are undoubtedly rare but may not be as rare as suggested by the world literature. Andermann and his associates1 cited 31 cases previously reported and added 20 more culled from the records of eight large institutions in Europe and the United States. Gastaut2 estimated that one patient in 1,000 induced absences; Wadlington and his associates,3 in a review of 20,000 electroencephalograms, mentioned two patients who induced seizures. Contrary to these experiences, we have in a little over a year encountered nine patients who induced minor attacks by blinking or waving their fingers before their eyes, two others who hyperventilated until they convulsed, and a patient who had a seizure on request, with no indication of how he did it. Several patients had been given toxic doses of medication in a vain effort to control the seizures because the underlying problem was not