Seizure admissions to a city hospital: the role of alcohol

Epilepsia. 1976 Dec;17(4):387-93. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1157.1976.tb04450.x.


Among 472 adult seizure admissions to a municipal hospital, 41% had a history of alcohol abuse. Those were predominantly men aged 40 to 50 years. The primary underlying conditions were the alcohol withdrawal state (59%) and posttraumatic seizures. The nonalcohol groups included men and women equally, commonly between 20 and 40 years old, and frequent causes were vascular disease and posttraumatic seizures. However, many patients (24% in the alcohol and 39% in the nonalcohol groups) had no demonstrable cause. Focal sizures comprised 24% of the alcohol and 20% of the nonalcohol groups. Nonalcoholic focal seizures had a tumor or vascular lesion in 47%; above age 50 the association was 60%. Alcohol-related focal seizures had such a lesion in 15%, and only 19% above age 50. Conditions associated with alcoholic focal seizures were alcohol withdrawal and posttrauma sequelae.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Alcoholism / complications*
  • Brain Injuries / complications
  • Brain Neoplasms / complications
  • Cerebrovascular Disorders / complications
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Seizures / etiology*
  • Substance Withdrawal Syndrome / complications*