Temporal Lobe Epilepsy (TLE)

What is Temporal Lobe Epilepsy (TLE)?

Temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) is a type of epilepsy characterized by seizures that arise from the temporal lobe of the brain, which is located on either side of the head and is the area commonly associated with memory, equipment, and language. TLE is the most common type of epilepsy, accounting for approximately 60 percent of all epilepsy cases.

Symptoms of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

The symptoms of TLE vary from person to person, and there are many different types of seizures associated with this condition, including:

  • Simple partial seizures, which can cause sudden changes in mood or sensations such as tingling, numbness, or dizziness
  • Complex partial seizures, which involve a loss of consciousness, staring off into space, and strange movements of the body
  • Secondary generalized seizures, which cause convulsions throughout the entire body

Diagnosis and Treatment of Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

In most cases, TLE is diagnosed with a physical exam, neurological examination, and a review of the patient's medical history. An electroencephalogram (EEG) is usually performed to confirm the diagnosis and rule out other types of seizures. Treatment is individualized and usually involves medications, such as antiepileptic drugs, as well as lifestyle modifications such as avoiding triggers like skipped meals, sleep deprivation, or bright lights. In some cases, surgery may be recommended to remove the portion of the brain affected by the seizures.

Living with Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

Living with temporal lobe epilepsy can be a difficult and challenging experience, as it can affect many aspects of a person's life. Those with TLE may find it difficult to get a driver's license, find employment, or maintain relationships due to the unpredictability of the condition. It is important to educate yourself about temporal lobe epilepsy and become involved in support groups in order to better manage this condition. With proper treatment and support, many with TLE can lead happy and fulfilling lives.