If you see someone who is having a seizure, stay calm. Although
seizures seem to last a long time, they usually do not last more than 60 to 90
seconds. Time the seizure, if you can. If the seizure lasts longer than 3
minutes or the person seizing is pregnant (no matter how long the seizure
lasts), call 911 or other emergency services immediately.
seizure can be terrifying to watch, especially if
you've never seen one before. A seizure temporarily interferes with muscle
control, movement, speech, vision, or awareness. It may cause a person's entire
body to shake violently for a few seconds to a few minutes, and he or she may
Seizures can be mild to severe, and they
affect people differently. Even though you may feel helpless around someone
having a seizure and find it difficult to watch, there are many things you can
do to help.
You may be
able to provide valuable feedback to the doctor treating the person having the
seizure. Try to remember:
do not always require urgent care. But
call 911 or other emergency services immediately if:
Other Works Consulted
Kaplan PW (2007). Seizure disorders. In NH Fiebach et al., eds., Principles of Ambulatory Medicine, 7th ed., pp. 1504–1531. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams and Wilkins.
August 26, 2011
Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics
& Steven C. Schachter, MD - Neurology
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