Epilepsy Action
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Can Seizures be diagnosed without an MRI


I was recently diagnosed with focal seizures this was all done via an EEG in my local A&E. I have not seen any neurologists since the diagnosis, in April this year.

I was a little concerned about this so I visisted a private neurologist and he was surprised that I had been diagnosed without an MRI.

Has anyone else been diagnosed with focal seizures without an MRI?

Has the MRI ever shown anything else?

Your help is always appreciated

4 Replies

I was diagnosed in 1995, before I had an MRI, after having an EEG which didn't show anything, then a sleep deprived EEG which did show changes. The MRI doesn't necessarily diagnose Epilepsy but can diagnose the cause for the epilepsy, the diagnosis is made by you're descriptions of the seizures and there has to be more than 2 without any temperature. It would be a good idea for you to ask your GP for a neurological referral to set your mind at rest and for an MRI, in some cases this can show if there would be a way of operating to stop the seizures.

Good luck




I was diagnosed with Temporal Lobe in Aug '14 at my first neurology appointment, although they did say that this was not a 100% proven diagnosis and wouldn't be unless I had a seizure during the EEG and MRI. I had both of those two procedures several months later which didn't show any anomalies nor did I have seizures at that exact time. I had even started the meds before those too!

I agree with whitemoon to request one anyway then you've covered all the basis and hopefully settle your mind. It is annoying it's not 100% but I've just accepted it for what it is now and my seizure symptoms before the meds were pretty particular that I can't see it could be anything else.

All the best x


Thanks I guess I will have to go to my GP to get this as at this stage I cannot get an appointment with a neurologist as my hospital file has gone missing!

Its annoying that 2 different neurologists seem to differ about what should happen.

Thanks again.


Unfortunately papers do go missing. Keep a copy of all the letters regarding your medical condition in a file. Keep a copy of all blood tests you have.

Have you had a Dexa scan? If you have ask for a copy, keep that.

Keep a small card with you in your purse or handbag with a list of meds. etc.

There is so much you can do, to help yourself.

As they say "Be prepared".


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