How do seizure disorder symptoms mimic schizophrenia?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Medicine
Some people with seizure disorder experience symptoms that may lead a doctor to suspect a diagnosis of schizophrenia. Caused by problems in the brain's electrical activity, seizure disorder is one of several medical conditions mirroring the symptoms of schizophrenia. Some of these symptoms include:
  • smelling or tasting things that others can't smell or taste
  • confusion
  • sleepiness
  • feelings of unease
  • seeing things that are not real
  • speech disorders or lacking an ability to speak
In order to make an accurate diagnosis, doctors will screen for seizure disorder by running multiple tests and getting the person's medical history. The Mayo Clinic reports that catatonic behavior can also be a symptom of seizure disorder. People displaying catatonic behavior will need to be screened to determine if they have catatonic schizophrenia or a seizure disorder.

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