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Audiogenic reflex seizures in cats

M. Lowrie, C. Bessant, R. J. Harvey, A. Sparkes, L. Garosi

REFLEX seizures can occur with any epilepsy type and the stimulus may be very specific. Numerous epileptic seizure syndromes involving reflex seizures have been described, but a robust classification scheme for reflex epilepsies remains elusive. Given the profession's increasing awareness of feline audiogenic reflex seizures (FARS), the authors of this study sought to better define and characterise this phenotype.

A questionnaire was used to gather data on suspected cases of audiogenic seizures in 96 cats. These included 16 cats that had suffered fewer than three generalised tonic-clonic seizures (GTCSs), 10 cats that had a history of GTCSs for less than one year, four cats that had no reported autonomic signs during episodes and two cats that had seizures reported to be more than five minutes in duration.

Myoclonic seizures were found to be one of the cardinal signs of this syndrome (90/96), frequently occurring before GTCSs in this population. Other features included a late onset (median 15 years) and absence seizures (6/96), with most seizures triggered by high frequency sounds amid occasional spontaneous seizures. Half the population …

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