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Medical Definition of Refractory epilepsy

Refractory epilepsy: a type of epilepsy that cannot be controlled by medications. This means that the affected person continues to have seizures even when taking anti-seziure medications. A number of different terms may be used to describe this type of epilepsy, including uncontrolled, intractable, refractory, or drug resistant. Refractory epilepsy typically causes seizures that are frequent and severe enough to significantly disrupt the patient's quality of life.

REFERENCE: Epilepsy Foundation. "Refractory epilepsy." Updated: Mar 2014.

Last Editorial Review: 2/10/2017

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