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February 1970


Arch Neurol. 1970;22(2):184-188. doi:10.1001/archneur.1970.00480200090012

A convulsion is but a symptom, and implies only that there is an occasional, an excessive, and a disorderly discharge of nerve tissue on muscles. This discharge occurs in all degrees; it occurs with all sorts of conditions of ill health, at all ages, and under innumerable circumstances. But in this article I shall narrow my task to the description of one class of chronic convulsive seizures. The great majority of chronic convulsions may be arranged in two classes.

1. Those in which the spasm affects both sides of the body almost contemporaneously. In these cases there is either no warning, or a very general one, such as a sensation at or about the epigastrium, or an indescribable feeling in the head. These cases are usually called epileptic, and sometimes cases of "genuine" or "idiopathic" epilepsy.

2. Those in which the fit begins by deliberate spasm on one side of the body

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