COVID-19 and Epilepsy: Its Effects on Seizures, Treatment and Social Life

Elmali A. D., Bebek N., YILDIRIM İ., Ayta S., ALTINDAĞ E., ASLAN K., ...More

EPILEPSI, vol.26, no.2, pp.49-58, 2020 (ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Review
  • Volume: 26 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.14744/epilepsi.2020.82713
  • Journal Name: EPILEPSI
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.49-58
  • Keywords: COVID-19, epilepsy, prevention, pandemic, SARS-Cov-2, telemedicine, PEOPLE
  • Gazi University Affiliated: Yes


Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can be spread rapidly and can be seen in a wide section of society at any age, affecting the whole society, as well as patients with epilepsy. A virus may cause neurological involvement, as well as systemic involvement. There is no evidence that COVID-19 disease triggers or worsens existing epileptic seizures. Seizures can be triggered secondary to the disease. Likewise, it is understood that individuals with epilepsy are not more likely to contract COVID-19 disease, and have not had the disease more seriously. Unless there are additional problems that pose a risk for COVID-19, the antiepileptic drugs used by patients do not pose a risk for infection. When it is necessary to use hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin and similar drugs in the treatment of COVID-19, antiepileptic treatment is recommended to be reviewed and properly regulated. Conditions, such as the use of cold medicines can increase the risk of seizures due to the pseudoephedrine they contain, and the risk of infection with immunomodulating drugs should be specially addressed. The risk of contamination is highest in places like hospital units, especially emergency units. Therefore, measures should be taken to prevent situations that may lead to the unnecessary application of people to the hospitals and the emergency units. During the epidemic period, individuals will try to obtain information using media, social media and websites. That is why it is crucial for health institutions and authorities to provide accurate information and guide the people during the epidemic. Informing people will allow patients to see the risks of the COVID epidemic more accurately and help prevent unnecessary anxiety.