May also be called: JME; Adolescent Myoclonic Epilepsy; Janz Syndrome
Epilepsy is a seizure disorder where electrical signals in the brain misfire,
causing temporary communication problems between nerve cells. Someone who gets repeated
seizures is thought to have epilepsy.
Kids and teens with juvenile
myoclonic epilepsy (JME) have multiple seizures that usually start around
puberty and continue into adulthood unless the seizures are controlled by medicine.
More to Know
People with JME may have different kinds of seizures. The most common are called
myoclonic jerks, in which a person can have quick jerks in the arms, legs, or shoulders,
often just one one side of the body.
seizures (previously called petit mal seizures) can cause rapid blinking or a
few seconds of staring into space.
seizures (previously called grand mal seizures) can make a person lose consciousness,
fall to the ground, and have full body muscle jerks or spasms.
Tonic means the muscles
in the body become stiff. Clonic refers to periods of shaking or jerking
in parts on the body. Myoclonic means brief jerking in parts of the body.
Keep in Mind
Seizures can be triggered by a lack of sleep, extreme tiredness, stress, or alcohol
consumption. Managing triggers and taking medicine can help prevent seizures for most
people with JME.
All A to Z dictionary entries
are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.