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The term ‘generalised’ in EEG reports: too much ambiguity?
  1. Francesco Brigo
  1. Correspondence to Dr Francesco Brigo, Department of Neurological, Neuropsychological, Morphological and Movement Sciences, Section of Clinical Neurology, University of Verona, Piazzale LA Scuro, 37134 Verona, Italy; dr.francescobrigo{at}

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EEG reporting is like trying to translate a picture into words: when not properly reflecting all the complexity of an EEG pattern, this challenging task may lead to misinterpretation, especially when the reader of the EEG report is a neurologist who is not an expert in epilepsy. One of the most common matters of debate and possible source of misunderstanding is the term ‘generalised’, which in epileptology refers to EEG discharges, seizures and epilepsies. Although this term is widely accepted in EEG reports, the use of the same word prompts debate when referring to seizures and epilepsy. Perhaps the use of the term in reporting EEGs should be reviewed.

The term ‘generalised’ has long been used, as opposed to ‘focal’ (or …

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed. This paper was reviewed by Robin Kennett, Oxford, UK.

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