Epilepsy: Exploring INFORMATION / KNOWLEDGE / EMPOWERMENT MODULE 1: Epilepsy 101 6 Generalized seizures have many subtypes.14 Absence Seizure A seizure that causes a sudden loss of consciousness (awareness), usually for about 10 to 20 seconds. The person may just stare into space.15 Clonic Seizure A seizure that causes muscles to go back and forth between contracting and relaxing, usually for a few seconds to 1 minute. The person may make jerky movements with their arms or legs.17 Tonic Seizure A seizure that causes muscles on both sides of the body to contract strongly and become intensely stiff, usually for less than 20 seconds. The person may fall if standing when the seizure starts.19 Atonic Seizure A seizure that causes a sudden loss of muscle tone, usually for less than 15 seconds. The person may drop things or fall. Atonic seizures are also called drop attacks or drop seizures.16 Myoclonic Seizure A seizure that causes brief, shock-like jerks that last 1 or 2 seconds. The person usually has muscle jerks on both sides of the body at the same time.18 Tonic-clonic Seizure A seizure that has 2 parts. First, during the tonic part, the muscles of the body contract strongly and may cause the person to fall. Then, during the clonic part, arms and legs jerk in a repeated pattern. A tonic-clonic seizure may from last 1 to 3 minutes.20 Tonic part Clonic part