uncontrollable laughter

I was just wondering if anyone has experienced uncontrollable laughter for no apparent reason in their child. My son will go into hysterical laughter, sometimes in the middle of the night, and when this happens he cannot feel pain or even stand up by himself he becomes "limp". I've just mentioned this to his neuro and he seems concerned. I always just thought it was related to his autism. Any ideas?
Thank you
Jennifer
BTW, my son has not been dx w TSC, but I have and very recently so I am not familiar with all of the "symptoms" yet.

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18 replies. Join the discussion

My grand daughter has had seizures that actually start with her laughing for no reason ( even at night) I believe they are called Jokial (sp) seizures. Not sure if that what he is experiencing but may be worth checking out. Hoping you get answers.

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My daughter went limp. But she did not laugh. I think grandmakaren mean jacksonian type seizures.

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There might be a possibility that these events are related to gelastic seizures. I am certainly not a medical expert, but I'm a mom whose (now adult) daughter has experienced gelastic seizure activity. You can do a Google or other search on these, and you will come upon explanations like the one found here, at an NIH page:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2646637/

You might want to ask your Neurologist about this type of seizure. Can you video-tape any of these events and/or the before/after events for your Dr. to review? That may help.

Take care,
~ Mau

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I think that laughing seizures are called gelastic seizures: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gelastic_seizure. It actually sounds pretty close to what you're describing.

My son does not have these (he has complex partial), but when he first started seizing as a baby, the seizure was always preceded by limpness, a "drunken" grin and laughter. Even now when he laughs for no apparent reason, we get a little jolt of fear. We never really know if it's seizure-related or not.

-Marlo

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Ha, Mau, we posted at the same time :)

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Haha, yup! Hope all the info. helps Jennifer and Jeremy, : )
~ Mau

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Gelastic seizures are one of Cody's seizure types. He's been having them since he was 6 months old. His real laugh is almost identical to the seizure laugh so it's a big emotional challenge. We always hesitate to celebrate his happiness until we know that it is in response to something. We've not had great success controlling them. He's currently on three AED's but still having daily episodes. His neuro tells us they are rare. Only two reported cases in TS reports but I've heard several people mention them here so obviously there just not getting reported.

How often is Jeremy having these events? Are they frequent enough that they may be caught by EEG? Can you get any video of it to share with your neuro?

Here's a video of Cody's. He was much younger in these clips and the seizures were much longer and stronger than we are seeing now...thank goodness!

Good luck getting some answers. We'll be thinking of you!

-Laura

Make an on-line slideshow at www.OneTrueMedia.com

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Thank you all for your responses. I'm going to record an episode for Jeremy's Neurologist and will then post it here. I'd love to hear what parents have to say.

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I have always thought that my son, Dane, laughed inappropriately or for no reason. None of our therapists or doctors have said much. They just say "hmmmmm..." He is 19 months old, has had IS (now controlled with Sabril), and has a high involvement of brain tubers. I am now wondering if they are gelastic seizures. I read that a harmartoma on the hypothalamus can be one cause.
He also wakes up screaming bloody murder sometimes at night. Not like normal crying either. Anyone get that too?

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Danesmom-Jeremy is 4 yrs old and doesn't sleep through the night and we wake to laughter or screaming and he is "unreachable" either way.

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My son Carson doesnt laugh but YES to the screaming at night. We didn't catch it on a video EEG... So we still dont know what to think of it. He too is "unreachable" afterwards. Can't even get on video because the screaming is so brief we don't get the camera & in his room in time to get a good recording. (he also has PDD, and like you mentioned, we wonder if it's just that.)
But the laughing spells definately sound concerning. I hope an EEG can catch one. Hang in there.

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To Jeremysmom2006 & Hahndoghotcakes4 - do your kiddos go back to sleep on their own? Mine doesn't. Thanks & good luck catching one on video. It is difficult!

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Jeremysmom: yes he goes right back to sleep be we stay in there for a few minutes to be sure he is ok.

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Kylie laughs in her sleep sometimes and they are always seizures.

My 4 yr old wakes up screaming at night at times and she is having night terrors. Our ped said this is common when kids are working on night time dryness, although this has been going on for awhile. But sure enough, if we put her on the toilet, she pees and then goes back to sleep without a fuss.

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My daughter does the same, her neruo. told me there is a laughing seizure. They seem so helpless when they have those.

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Hi, my son Riley laughs during some of his seizures. These are challenging once the child reaches school age, Riley is in 3rd grade. Riley once got in trouble for having a laughing seizure during school. The teacher just thought he was being disruptive. Best of luck to you.

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my 27 year old son often starts to laugh uncontrollably and unnaturally. There do not appear to be any after effects, but I have never had the side effects you mention. Along with all the other 'unusual' things that happen to him, we just learned to live with this.
good luck

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My son too has been waking up lately screaming like his is having a bad dream. Not, a hunger cry. He is 1.5 years old. I have been keeping track of everything just in case we need to report it to the nero. I mentioned it to his neruo. and his ped. He has only had 3 in the last 3 weeks though. I have to give him a bottle and cuddle with him for 45 min.to 1 hour and then put him back to bed and he is fine. He can answer questions by shaking his head, so he knows what is happening. I read on the internet, that dreams can happen at any age. I wonder what he is dreaming about though. Good luck.

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