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Clin Electroencephalogr. 1991 Jul;22(3):141-3.

Recovery of cognition from persistent vegetative state in a child with normal somatosensory evoked potentials.

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  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Children's Hospital, Ohio State University, Columbus 43205.


The absence of bilateral early cortical SEPs in a PVS due to nontraumatic coma is usually associated with failure to recover cognition or awareness, although rarely patients with bilaterally absent cortical SEPs in posttraumatic PVS may regain cognition. On the other hand, normal cortical SEPs in nontraumatic coma may be related to favorable outcomes as shown in this patient and other reports. Our patient is unique in that he had had serial normal SEPs, was in a PVS for 7 1/2 months, and recovered cognition, but not without cost in terms of damage to intellectual capability. Further long-term clinical follow-up studies to correlate clinical outcome with serial SEP data may be indicated.

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