2018 Epilepsy Pipeline Conference

Watch Community Day of the 2018 Edition of the Epilepsy Foundation Conference, Live from San Francisco on Saturday, February 24


About half of women with epilepsy say that they have more seizures around the time of their menstrual period, especially just before it. This situation is so common that there's a name for it: catamenial (KAT-uh-MEEN-ee-ul) epilepsy.

  • These seizures can be hard to control. Don't be embarrassed to talk to your neurologist about them.
  • The neurologist might suggest that you take a slightly higher dose of your seizure medicine at this time of the month, or that you add another medicine.
  • You can also help yourself to have fewer seizures at these times by being careful to get enough sleep and avoiding things like alcohol or too much stress.
  • If you continue to have seizures around menstruation, ask for a referral to an epilepsy specialist, ideally one who specializes in women's issues. More testing may be needed and different options considered. 

Topic Editor:Steven C. Schachter, M.D., Joseph I. Sirven, MD
Last Reviewed:8/25/2013

Authored Date: 
Tuesday, October 15, 2013