Which precautions should patients with epilepsy take when swimming or bathing?

Updated: May 30, 2019
  • Author: David Y Ko, MD; Chief Editor: Selim R Benbadis, MD  more...
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Answer

Common sense dictates that patients with seizures should not swim alone, and they should be particularly aware of the importance of the presence of an adult lifeguard who can pull them out of the water if needed. Wearing a life jacket in a boat is important. Activities as simple as taking a bath may be risky, because a person can drown in as little as 1 inch of water during the flaccid postictal phase. In addition, a patient who has a seizure while waiting for bath water to warm up may suffer hot-water burns.


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