Epilepsy is but a symptom revealing some irritation of the general nervous system. It has been aptly divided for purposes of classification into traumatic and idiopathic. In traumatic epilepsy, the cause is evident. Pressure from bone, foreign body, or blood clot is the source which so irritates the brain as to interfere materially with the normal distribution of nerve force through the body.
Certain chemical substances have a distinct affinity for the cortical cells of the brain and cord and, as a result, excite them. Among the alkaloids, strychnin is prominent. Among toxins resulting from infection, the poison of tetanus and hydrophobia afford us similar examples. These toxins generated in the body under the influence of the developing pathogenic organism finally accumulate to such an extent as to produce a violent action on the cerebrospinal system, followed by contractions of the muscular system characteristic of these diseases. Very similar is