Wheelchair

If someone starts to have a seizure while confined in a wheelchair, seated on a bus, train or tram or strapped in a pram or stroller:

DO

  • Protect the person by preventing them from falling if there is no seat belt
  • Make sure the wheelchair or the stroller is secure
  • Protect the person by supporting their head.  Something soft under the head will help if there is no moulded headrest
  • Check whether you need to move any hard objects that might hurt arms and legs in particular
  • Consciousness usually returns within a few minutes
  • Reassure the person and tell them what has happened

NB: When the seizure has finished you need to ensure their airway is clear.  This may involve removing food or vomit from their mouth and supporting their head to maintain a clear airway.  It may or may not be appropriate to remove the person from the chair a the end of the seizure.  This will depend on your assessment of the safety issues involved both for you and for them.

DO NOT

  • Try to stop the seizure
  • Put anything in the persons mouth
  • Try to remove them from their position, in most cases the seat provides some support

Call an ambulance – 000 – if:

  • The seizure activity lasts 5 or more minutes or a second seizure quickly follows
  • The person remains non-responsive for more than 5 minutes after the seizure stops
  • The person is having a greater number of seizures than is usual for them
  • The person is injured
  • The person is pregnant or has diabetes
  • You know, or believe it to be, the person’s first seizure
  • You feel uncomfortable dealing with the seizure at the time

Click hyperlink to your Wheelchair First Aid Poster.

Information from the Epilepsy Australia webpage.