MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

The reason I ask is because it's something that only started over the last few months. I have complex partial epilepsy with primarily left seizures & secondary generalisation sometime.

 I've lately developed this 'thing' where whilst having a seizure, I'll suddenly have a mini blackout. It literally last for like a seond or two - and I'm fully consious, but my eyes will just drop closed and then a second later I'llcome to with a massive jolt. It scares the absolute crap out of me... It's like when you've just dosed off, and you wake up instantly feeling your about to be smacked in the head... or like dosing of behind the steering wheel! (I dont drive, it's jsut what it feels like) That terror & fear all in one second.

And then I'm fine....     I'm bound to see my specialist in November, where they will do the final MRI, Video EEG(2 weeks) SPECT scan and Pet scan. But till then it's getting to be a more and more regular occurance with my fits.

 Has ANYONE else had this?


Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

This sounds REALLY similiar to something I've developed in the past few months as well. Like you, I have complex partial seizures but with tonic-clonic seizures. It happens so fast to me that I don't fall forward or backward; I just fall in a pile on the ground. Out of nowhere I started to do exactly the same thing you described. I am an American living in Japan and these seizures absolutely scare me more than anything. Once I had one of these seizures while getting off of a train and my eyes closed just as I made my first step from the train to the platform. The next thing I remember is that my eyes opened suddenly while being dragged off of the train. Another time one of these seizures happened while jogging; I just fell in a pile on the ground then suddenly opened my eyes less than 2 seconds later.

Sometimes they vary in intensity, though, with me. I was walking once and one of these seizures occurred wherein I kept walking but lost consciousness. About 2 seconds later I regained conciousness but was not where I was before.

As I wrote in my personal story, I feel like somebody is flipping an on-off remote switch. These seizures made me scared to do anything; to ride a bicycle, to walk across a busy street.  Studying the information on this website made me first think these were tonic seizures that did not go to the clonic stage but now I am starting to change my view. I now wonder if these seizures are primary complex seizures with secondary generalization. Do they feel like they have the same origin as your other primary seizures?

Please look at my story for a better description of my history. I am really interested in yours so please contact me back!

Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

That's very interesting Micheal... I've never lost conciousness whilst fitting, so I'm not sure if it's related - but it's onlyever happened whilst I was having my 'nomal' seizures so it's definately connected to my normal seizures in the sense that they dont happen individually.

I would be sitting on the couch, and between my seizures I would unvoluntaringly close my eyes (I can still hear everything etc) for a second and then SMACK I jump back to attention. It litterally feels like i've dosed off and now something is going to hit me in the face - although I KNOW there is nothing there...

My siezures are mainly muscle contractions on my left side, sometimes to the point where I cant walk because my legs are so unstable & would 'vibrate' .

Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

Thanks for your reply.

You are at first having muscle contractions on your left side and then this situation develops. I never have muscle contractions, unlike you, but I start with simple seizure where I have full consciousness (i.e. aura) and can continue to do whatever it is that I am doing, even speak and listen to people, but my answers will be much slower. For a long time this simple seizure foretold of one of my tonic-clonic seizures to come.

Lately, though, the simple seizure that I had before developed into a situation where it could either remain the same as before or it could worsen and suddenly I would lose all muscle control for a very brief span of time, maybe 1 second or 2-3 seconds at the most. Then I would suddenly regain all motor control with a sudden jolt of electricity. In that respect, then, this is definetely related to my other seizures, but I am desperately searching for any clues as to how.

It literally scares the &#@ out of me. It happens so quick that it makes it impossible for me to function correctly during the day. However, I just had an appointment with my neurologist today and he told me his main priority is keeping my tonic-clonic seizures under control. These are the ones that are causing me the problems!


Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

I could have written your post. I too, have complex partial - with left temporal lobe seizures, that sometimes secondarily generalize. You are describing something extremely similar to something I was having. I described these incidents similar to a "record skipping" whereby you lose a few seconds of time. The scary part for me is that mine happened while I was driving and these incidents were starting to happen more often.

This was right before I started seizure meds, as I didn't recognize them as seizures at first. I had no clue what what going on, I thought I was just tired, as I wasn't sleeping well at night. My other seizures started soon after and then my driver's license was taken away. Once all of my seizures were fully under control, my license was given back.

My advice to you is to call your doctor and just let him/her know what's been going on. November is a long way off and the scans will probably show nothing at all. Sounds like you just may need an adjustment or change in your medication. I'd hate to see your seizures start cycling again.

Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

sam, my seizures hasnt stop cycling... :( My meds dont do anything to control my seizures, so I dont adjustments would do me any good.. The earliest appointment I can get with my personal specialist is the 10 November, which is only 9 days before I go to the surgery specialist.... So annoying! And whenever I talk to her about my seizures she's like "wow that's really interesting" and gets 4-5 medical students as I'm such an interesting case... Grrr....

Just out of interest - Do any of you get auras with complex partial? Apparentely it's  uncommon and not assoc with comp partial, yet I tend to get them..?


Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

I'm sorry you're having such a hard time getting your seizures under control. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe I read on these boards that auras are really simple partial seizures. I was having SPS and I was so completely aware of my surroundings, just unable to come out of it and had to wait them out. They are so surreal - almost an altered state of consciousness. Just curious, what meds are you on? They have me on Topamax, and so far, so good.

Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

Yes, this "micro sleep" thing is exactly what I have.  I thought I had narcolepsy, but all the sleep disorder tests showed that I had no sleep disorders, and that I wasn't falling asleep for these split seconds.  An EEG showed temporal lobe spikes.  I've been on Keppra for about a year and a half (1000mg twice a day) and I don't get these episodes any more.  I had never even considered epilepsy as a diagnosis because I never heard of this split second sleep-like thing being a seizure.  It took me quite awhile to wrap my head around the diagnosis once I got it.  I had a neurologist tell me I was "depressed" and then pretty much accuse me of wanting to be prescribed speed.  I saw a sleep psychologist who agreed with me that I wasn't depressed, but was baffled by what it could be.  She then consulted with another neurologist/sleep specialist who asked her to have me see him.  He's the one who diagnosed seizures. 

I don't have these randomly--there are definite triggers for me, and often I have an aura of feeling like I'm on a roller coaster just before it happens.  I never fall to the ground, but I have walked places while "sleeping" (when I had a very boring security guard job), and driven partway off the road in the past.  I've also woken up at my computer in the office, and once while doing a crossword puzzle.  Movies with explosions would make me fall asleep, which I thought was kind of ironic.  Certain people's voices would put me out almost right away.  It was becoming embarrassing and debilitating, and limited my driving to no more than 20-30 minutes because any longer than that would set me off uncontrollably.  I never have had these episodes when I'm doing something physically active that I'm mentally engaged in.  Like I said, the Keppra has this under control very well now (it's the only med I take).

It's interesting to see a bunch of people who have this kind of seizure--I thought I was the only one!


Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

My mother began having seizures following th birth of my sister. My sister is now eleven yrs old. My mom's been on a variety of meds. Over the past yr her seizures have been happening far and few between. However, she has been having "blackouts". My mom's short term memory hasn't been very good since the seizures began. She recently started  taking keppra, which has been helping tremendously. I'm really worried and scared for her. I would really love some insight and advice about how I can best be there for her.


Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

Hi there all,

 I sure could do with some advice. For the past couple of years now I have been suffering from what the doctors describe as 'blackouts'(defined as this as I simply do not have any notice to these brief loss of conciousness). As Catsamu described I am literally out a matter off seconds( and my husband thought it may be narcolepsy) , but when I come round, I am usually in a dazed state and struggle to make sense of the words people are saying to me (I do but it just takes me longer than usual).

Also somedays, I get a general sense of not feeling well and finding it difficult to comprehend information. I find it partically difficuly on the morning school run as stress does tend to effect my condition and this is the time when it is more frequent at occurring. It almost feels like its a reset button on a computer or something. One minute i'm highly stressesed the next, Im dazed coming round on the floor, completely calm and the worries I had previously seem irrevelent. I guess in essence it just totally buts everything into prespective for me.

 I have been going to see a specialist for just short of a year now and  he still isnt certain what is causing my condition. His two main theories are a form of epilepsy or a complicated migraine. About the only thing that we have established is that the headaches I have been suffering are indeed migraines but as I dont always have a migraine when I blackout, we are unsure if they are merely a sympton or the cause of my condition.

 My blackouts are very infrequent.  In the last year alone I had approx 12, and up until last sunday I had none since August. However,  on Sunday I had two within the space of 40 minutes. Like I said when I blackout i am only unconcious a matter of seconds ( a minute tops) and dont have any unvolunary movement.

 I was just wondering if from your prespectives it sounds like symptoms of an epilectic or if you would expect me to have furthor symptoms.

 So far all the test have returned back clear, yet I have not suffered any illnesses whilst having my MIR or EEG or ECG and I just feel I am going round in circles at the moment. I just want to know what I am suffering from so that the doctor can start me on some treatment, as its extremely scary for my two young girls.

 I will be grateful for any guidance or advice you can give. Ty all so much!

Re: MINI Sudden Blackouts - Has anyone had something similar??

i was wondering what your test results were?

i was diagnosed with a seizure disorder when i was 16. i am now 22 and live outside of philadelphia.

i have had one cat scan and there was no spot on my brain. i started on topamax with great success. i then changed to keppra with great success, because i could not stay awake. about a year lator i started getting these mini blackouts. so, i was swiched to zonegran with no problems. Then my insurance ran out about a year and a half ago so i switched to generic zonegran. i was allright for about  three months, then the mini blackouts came back. they got worse as time went on lasting about an hour. i had to quit my job as a baker because i was dropping stuff. recently, they have been so bad that i have been falling down, i even sprained my leg this last april putting deodrant on. my parents understand, but the rest of the family thinks i am nuts. my neurologist thinks i am making this up. so she just keeps uping the mg on the med, but it makes it worse. i am now on generic topamax and still blacking out.

sorry for the long story but, i am very curious what they told you.