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October 1970

The Epilepsies: Modern Diagnosis and Treatment.

Arch Neurol. 1970;23(4):381-382. doi:10.1001/archneur.1970.00480280095013

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This manual is a short and lucil introduction to the diagnosis and management of epilepsy, suitable for the interested medical student or junior house officer. Its chief value for more experienced physicians lies in its indications of beliefs held more firmly elsewhere than in the United States. Some of these beliefs are of undoubted interest, such as that status epilepticus is more commonly found with frontal lobe lesions: others seem wrongheaded, eg, that the administration of ethosuximide (Zarontin) in cases of petit mal potentiates the onset of grand mal. This assertion would be hard to prove, since 50% of patients with petit mal are in any case destined to develop grand mal; the reviewer knows of no good statistical evidence for this assertion about ethosuximide, which is dangerous in that it might lead to undertreatment of petit mal.

The section on drug therapy has a more general interest, in that

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