Table 1

Descriptive criteria for the diagnosis of a single seizure. (Seizures that never present as a single event, like absences, are not described in this table.)

A Episode with loss of consciousness
1and jerks in one or more extremities or the face with or without tongue bite (generalised seizure)
2and stiffness in one or more extremities with or without tongue bite (generalised seizure)
3with only tongue bite (generalised seizure)
4preceded by a classical aura (generalised seizure)
B Episode of lowered consciousness without reaction to external stimuli
1staring spell without automatisms, but preceded by a classical aura (complex partial seizure)
2episode lasting more than 30 seconds with automatisms like smacking, swallowing, blinking, grimacing, fumbling, or making continuous stereotyped movements, not remembered by the patient (complex partial seizure or absence status)
C Episode with normal consciousness and
1one sided myoclonic jerks or stiffness in the face, jaw and/or tongue
2one sided myoclonic jerks of the extremities
3involuntary noises from the throat
4paresthesias or numbness in the face, mouth, throat, tongue or extremities (one sided)
(1–6: simple partial seizure)
The event should not have been provoked by fever (temperature above 38°C, febrile convulsion); pain, acute emotional upset, or other known reason (collapse, blue or pale breath holding spell, Sandifer syndrome etc), nor should it have a reasonable explanation other than epileptic.