Video tour of epileptic seizures and their mimics

Speaker: Laurent Garosi

View Profile

Video tour of epileptic seizures and their mimics

Epileptic seizures are one of the most common neurological presentation in dogs and cats.  They can be generalized or partial depending on the brain being affected on both sides from the start or only in one specific area respectively.  Although increasingly being recognized, paroxysmal dyskinesias (PDs) are often poorly characterised in the veterinary literature and are commonly mistaken for an epileptic seizure, both by owners and by vets. PDs are episodic movement disorders in which abnormal movements are present only during attacks. Between attacks, dogs are neurologically normal and there is no loss of consciousness during the attacks, though some dogs find the episodes disconcerting and do not respond normally. The attacks can last anything from a few minutes to a couple of hours and can sometime occur in clusters. Dogs and people with PD are therefore often misdiagnosed as having unusual epileptic seizures (in some types of seizure, the patient remains conscious – as in an attack of PD). Correct identification of the exact nature of the paroxysmal event is therefore fundamental. This presentation will illustrate with video examples the difference between PD and other paroxysmal neurological events such as epileptic seizures as well as current recommendations in term of diagnostic investigations and management.


Learning objectives


  • Knowing common features of generalized tonico-clonic epileptic seizures
  • Being familiar with various types of partial epileptic seizures
  • Being able to differentiate an epileptic seizure from paroxysmal dyskinesia
  • Being familiar with common breed-related paroxysmal dyskinesia
  • Being familiar with management of paroxysmal dyskinesia