Definition and Classification of Status Epilepticus

In this article, we will discuss the Definition and Classification of Status Epilepticus. So, let’s get started.


It is defined as continuous seizural motor activity for more than 30 minutes or recurrent seizures without recovery of consciousness between seizures. During seizures, the patient may hurt himself/herself and there may be soiling of clothes with urine and feces. Status epilepticus is a medical emergency as it has the potential for neural damage and brain death, therefore, prompt and appropriate treatment is essential. Status epilepticus has many sub-types, i.e. recurrent tonic-clonic seizures (generalized convulsive status epilepticus), partial motor status, complex partial status, and absence status.

Nonconvulsive status epilepticus: In some cases, status epilepticus is not present with convulsion but is present with fluctuating abnormal behavior, confusion, impaired responsiveness, and automatism. EEG establishes the diagnosis. The treatment is similar to status epilepticus.


Convulsive status epilepticus

A. Primary generalized convulsive status epilepticus

  • Tonic-clonic status
  • Myoclonic status

B. Simple partial status epilepticus

C. Generalized major motor status with partial onset

Nonconvulsive status epilepticus

  • Complex partial status
  • Absence status epilepticus (typical or atypical)

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