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Eur J Paediatr Neurol. 2006 May;10(3):148-51. Epub 2006 Apr 24.

The effects of the ketogenic diet in refractory partial seizures with reference to tuberous sclerosis.

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  • 1Clinic of Child Neuropsychiatry, Second University of Naples, Naples, Italy.



Tuberous sclerosis complex (OMIM 191100) is a multiorgan disease commonly associated with epilepsy refractory to anticonvulsants. Individual reports indicate that seizures in children with tuberous sclerosis might benefit from a ketogenic diet. We studied the effects of the diet introduced at 3.5 years of age in three boys with tuberous sclerosis and refractory partial seizures.


On admission a classical LCT ketogenic diet was initiated and patients were followed for 12 months. Antiepileptic drugs were maintained unless adverse effects required reduction.


Two patients became seizure-free within 2 months on the diet. In the third patient drop attacks decreased significantly. On follow-up the diet was well accepted and without adverse effects.


The ketogenic diet should be considered as a treatment option for children with tuberous sclerosis and partial seizures refractory to anticonvulsants. Our data support the need for further studies in larger cohorts to confirm the effectiveness of the ketogenic diet in this entity.

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