Patients with non-acquired focal epilepsy are more likely to experience seizures while asleep, when compared to patients with generalized epilepsy. An analysis of nearly 1400 patients enrolled in the Epilepsy Phenome/Genome Project also revealed that these sleep/wake patterns applied to both convulsive and nonconvulsive seizures. The study further found that seizures occurring within an hour of awakening were more likely to happen in patients with generalized epilepsy, for both convulsive and nonconvulsive seizures. The researchers also discovered that the timing of seizures in first degree relatives predicted the timing of seizures in the proband, suggesting a genetic underpinning to the correlations.
Winawer MR, Shih J, Beck ES, Hunter JE, Epstein MP; EPGP Investigators. Genetic effects on sleep/wake variation on seizures. Epilepsia. 2016;57(4):557-665.