Seizure – tonic-clonic; Seizure – grand mal; Grand mal seizure; Seizure – generalized
Definition of Generalized tonic-clonic seizure
A generalized tonic-clonic seizure is a seizure involving the entire body. It is also called a grand mal seizure. Such seizures usually involve muscle rigidity, violent muscle contractions, and loss of consciousness.
Many patients have an aura (a sensory warning sign) before the seizure. This can include vision, taste, smell, or sensory changes, hallucinations, or dizziness.
Linda Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington School of Medicine; Luc Jasmin, MD, PhD, Department of Neurosurgery at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, and Department of Anatomy at UCSF, San Francisco, CA. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc. – 1/23/2010