Patients with seizures may be concerned that their children or other family members will inherit epilepsy. This fear is usually unfounded. Patients with acquired causes of seizures, such as head trauma or stroke, will not transmit the problem. There is a group of patients, however, who apparently have epilepsy on a genetic basis. Most of these individuals have primary generalized epilepsy.14, 5 Usually these patients develop seizures during childhood. However, the hereditary tendency is not strong. Complex inheritance patterns are usually seen, indicating the likely involvement of several abnormal genes or other factors for seizures to be clinically expressed in offspring. Thus, most patients can be reassured that their children and siblings are unlikely to develop epilepsy. Increasing numbers of epilepsy syndromes are being identified as being of genetic origin, and once the specific genes are identified it may be possible to target drug therapies more specifically toward individual biochemical defects.
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Although nobody gets a parenting manual or bible in the delivery room, it is our duty as parents to try to make our kids as well rounded, happy and confident as possible. It is a lot easier to bring up great kids than it is to try and fix problems caused by bad parenting, when our kids have become adults. Our children are all individuals - they are not our property but people in their own right.