Tonic-clonic seiszure is also know as 'grand mal', originally a French term meaning 'big sickness'. It is a type of seizure that results in loss of consciousness, generalized muscle contractions (not caused by atrophy of muscles), urinary incontinence, tongue biting and a state of confusion and lethargy following cessation of the seizure.
Pre-attack: Before the attack, usually there is a brief feeling of sinking or rising in the stomach, or the person may cry out or groan before losing consciousness completely.
The tonic phase: The limbs become stiff and rigid, and breathing stops, causing the lips to go blue. The eyes are rolled upward, and the jaws are clenched and sometimes the tongue and lips can be bitten if they are in the way,
The clonic phase: After the initial tonic phase, within a minute or so, the clonic phase follows. Body shakes violently in waves and the limbs jerk rhythmly. Usually these last for couple of minutes. Then consciousness recovers, then confusion usually lasts for several minutes, and sleepiness follows. The headache and soreness of the muscles may last for a day or more, depending on the severity of the convulsions.
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