Generalized Epilepsy with Febrile Seizures Plus (GEFS+)
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Brief History/Evolution of the Concept
Generalized (or genetic) epilepsy with febrile seizures plus is often abbreviated as GEFS+. Scheffer and colleagues regard it as a familial epilepsy syndrome and first described it in 1997. Their observations were based upon a very careful and extensive examination of large families with multiple affected individuals (Scheffer and Berkovic 1997). Family members had febrile seizures (FS) alone, febrile seizures plus (FS+), or afebrile seizures. FS+ was used to describe individuals who had some atypical feature to their FS such as a presentation before 3 months or after 6 years of age. Also, FS+ could refer to the presence of afebrile seizures. Initially, the afebrile seizures in these individuals were noted to be generalized, including absence, convulsions, and myoclonus and atonic seizures. In fact, generalized seizures are still the predominant afebrile generalized seizures in these families; however, temporal lobe epilepsy has also been...