Todd's Paralysis

What Is It?

Todd's paralysis is a phenomenon that occurs in some individuals with epilepsy after a seizure, particularly motor convulsive seizures. Following a seizure, a part of the patient's body, usually on just one side of the body, is partially or completely paralyzed. This paralysis can last briefly or up to a few days, but usually lasts at least several hours. It then resolves completely and does not typically leave any residual weakness or paralysis.

Very little is known about what causes the paralysis following some seizures.

Because weakness or paralysis on one side of the body closely resembles an ischemic stroke, care must be taken to distinguish Todd's from stroke. The underlying cause and pathology is completely different and they require completely different treatment.

How Is it Treated?

There is no specific treatment indicated for paralysis following a seizure. The paralysis resolves on its own. However, if the patient has not previously been diagnosed with and treated for epilepsy, they may require further work-up and treatment for their seizure condition.

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Important Note: This site is not intended to offer medical advice. Every patient is different, and only your personal physician can help to counsel you about what is best for your situation. What we offer is general reference information about various disorders and treatments for your education.

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