Seizure Type Classification

Seizure Type Classification

The ILAE Commission on Classification and Terminology strives to continually review definitions of seizure types, syndromes, and epilepsy aetiologies, aligned to the latest developments in this field. In 2010 the Commission introduced new concepts into the classification, or as it was termed then organisation, of seizure types and the epilepsies taking a more aetiological approach than previous classifications [1]. This document and a subsequent report, published online, invited comment from the epilepsy community [2]. Debate within the epilepsy community has been well informed and passionate.

The Commission 2013-17 has re-introduced the term classification and charged two Task Forces to further develop the Classification of Seizures and Epilepsies. A Task Force on Classification is developing a framework for classification of the epilepsies and focusing on areas of terminology. This will be presented for comment in the new ILAE journal Epilepsia Open in the near future. The Seizure Type Classification Task Force has focused on developing a clinically-focused seizure type classification which is presented below for comment.

Based upon the comments from the epilepsy community, this Seizure Classification expands upon and slightly modifies the seizure classification described in Table 2 of the 2010 proposal [1]. The goal is to establish a final seizure classification scheme accepted by ILAE and the broad epilepsy community. The Commission on Classification & Terminology relies on comments from the wider epilepsy community to ensure that definitions and classifications are conceptually sound, acceptable and clinically meaningful. In addition, they have to translate across the many different languages in which they may be used, and work in a variety of different health care settings and in different media.

Operational Classification of Seizure Types by the International League Against Epilepsy
Please send your comments to for posting to the website for the entire community to consider.

Comments are open for 2 months, i.e. until 4 June 2016. Comments will be posted on the web site and will be reviewed by the authors of the classification document prior to its finalization.

  1. Berg AT, Berkovic SF, Brodie MJ, Buchhalter J, Cross JH, van Emde Boas W, Engel J, French J, Glauser TA, Mathern GW, Moshé SL, Nordli D, Plouin P, Scheffer IE. Revised terminology and concepts for organization of seizures and epilepsies: report of the ILAE Commission on Classification and Terminology, 2005-2009. Epilepsia. 2010 Apr;51(4):676-85.

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